7.4/10
79,177
195 user 97 critic

Witness (1985)

Trailer
1:19 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
When a young Amish boy is sole witness to a murder, policeman John Book goes into hiding in Amish country to protect him until the trial.

Director:

Peter Weir

Writers:

William Kelley (story by), Pamela Wallace (story by) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
2,180 ( 1,114)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 11 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

As a lawyer investigates the murder of a colleague, he finds himself more connected to the crime than anyone else.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Harrison Ford, Raul Julia, Greta Scacchi
The Fugitive (1993)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Dr. Richard Kimble, unjustly accused of murdering his wife, must find the real killer while being the target of a nationwide manhunt led by a seasoned U.S. Marshal.

Director: Andrew Davis
Stars: Harrison Ford, Tommy Lee Jones, Sela Ward
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An inventor spurns his city life to move his family into the jungles of Central America to make a utopia.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Harrison Ford, Helen Mirren, River Phoenix
Patriot Games (1992)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When CIA analyst Jack Ryan interferes with an IRA assassination, a renegade faction targets him and his family for revenge.

Director: Phillip Noyce
Stars: Harrison Ford, Sean Bean, Anne Archer
Air Force One (1997)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Communist Radicals hijack Air Force One with The U.S. President and his family on board. The Vice President negotiates from Washington D.C., while the President, a Veteran, fights to rescue the hostages on board.

Director: Wolfgang Petersen
Stars: Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, Glenn Close
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

CIA Analyst Jack Ryan is drawn into an illegal war fought by the US government against a Colombian drug cartel.

Director: Phillip Noyce
Stars: Harrison Ford, Willem Dafoe, Anne Archer
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

After being shot, a man loses his memory and must relearn speech and mobility, but he has a loving family to support him.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Harrison Ford, Annette Bening, Michael Haley
Working Girl (1988)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When a secretary's idea is stolen by her boss, she seizes an opportunity to steal it back by pretending she has her boss' job.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Melanie Griffith, Harrison Ford, Sigourney Weaver
Frantic (1988)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In a hotel room in Paris, a doctor comes out of the shower and finds that his wife has disappeared. He soon finds himself caught up in a world of intrigue, espionage, gangsters, drugs and murder.

Director: Roman Polanski
Stars: Harrison Ford, Betty Buckley, Emmanuelle Seigner
Sabrina (1995)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An ugly duckling having undergone a remarkable change, still harbors feelings for her crush: a carefree playboy, but not before his business-focused brother has something to say about it.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Harrison Ford, Julia Ormond, Greg Kinnear
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A police officer uncovers the real identity of his house-guest, an I.R.A. terrorist in hiding.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Harrison Ford, Brad Pitt, Margaret Colin
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Robin Monroe, a New York magazine editor, and the gruff pilot Quinn Harris must put aside their mutual dislike if they are to survive after crash landing on a deserted South Seas island.

Director: Ivan Reitman
Stars: Harrison Ford, Anne Heche, David Schwimmer
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Harrison Ford ... John Book
Kelly McGillis ... Rachel
Josef Sommer ... Schaeffer
Lukas Haas ... Samuel
Jan Rubes ... Eli Lapp
Alexander Godunov ... Daniel Hochleitner
Danny Glover ... McFee
Brent Jennings ... Carter
Patti LuPone ... Elaine
Angus MacInnes ... Fergie
Frederick Rolf Frederick Rolf ... Stoltzfus
Viggo Mortensen ... Moses Hochleitner
John Garson John Garson ... Bishop Tchantz
Beverly May Beverly May ... Mrs. Yoder
Ed Crowley ... Sheriff
Edit

Storyline

An 8 year old Amish boy and his mother are traveling to Philadelphia, on their way to visit the mother's sister. While waiting at the train station, the young boy witnesses a brutal murder inside one of the bathroom stalls. Police detective John Book is assigned to investigate the murder of the man, who was a undercover cop. Soon after, Book finds out that he's in great danger when the culprits know about his investigation and hides out in the Amish community. There, he learns the way of living among the Amish locals, which consists of non-violence and agriculture. Book soon starts a romance with the mother of the little boy, but their romance is forbidden by the Amish standards. But, it's not long before the bad guys find out Book's whereabouts. Written by blazesnakes9

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

amish | murder | train | love | police | See All (92) »

Taglines:

8 year old Samuel: sole witness to a murder. Three killers who'll stop at nothing to silence him. One honest cop who'll give his life to save him... See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

8 February 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Called Home See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby (as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This is one of only two films from 1985 to receive the full rating of four stars in the British reference book "Halliwell's Film and Video Guide", which describes it as "one of those lucky movies which works out well on all counts and shows that there are still craftsmen lurking in Hollywood." See more »

Goofs

The Amish do neither speak nor understand modern-day High German, they speak Pennsylvania Dutch (Palatine German or Pfaelzisch) a Franconian dialect. See more »

Quotes

Tourist Lady: [Book is in town with Eli. Eli and the other Amish are trying to avoid the tourists with cameras] Hi! We're just here for the day, would you mind...
John Book: Lady, you take my picture with that thing and I'm gonna rip your brassiere off... and strangle you with it! You got that?
Tourist Lady: [in disbelief, to no one in particular] Did you hear what that Amish just said to me?
See more »

Crazy Credits

For Tom Scott. Scott was a member of the casting department on Witness. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the VHS version, just after John Book is shot, we see a close-up of his gun and a voice-over from an earlier conversation Book had with the captain. We hear the words: "Who else knows about this? "Just you and me." In the DVD version, we see the close-up of the gun and then it segues to Book's sister waking up Rachel and her son Samuel, minus the voice-over. See more »


Soundtracks

Shocking Behavior
(1984)
Written by Paul Chiten and Sue Sheridan
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

not so flawed...
27 January 2002 | by tanya-63See all my reviews

An earlier comment on the site suggests that the film is flawed because the Amish boy, coming from a secure, peaceful environment, would not be able to witness a scene of brutality without becoming utterly traumatised.

Far from being a flaw, I believe this is a key statement of the theme of the film - that the close, peaceful and loving upbringing he has enjoyed provide the boy with an emotional strength and resilience that allows him to recognise evil and reject it. Later that same environment will provide the embittered and emotionally scarred with a temporary oasis where he can in part recover from the loveless violence of his own life.

Contrast the failure of community in the vast and soulless terminal building, where the first scene is set, where every one is isolated by the indifference and aggression of their fellow travellers, with the co-operative endeavour of the justly famous barn raising scene, where even the outsider is welcomed and included in an act of joint creation.


79 of 100 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 195 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows to Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse all our free movies and TV series

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed