8.6/10
34
3 user

A Walk in the Woods (1988)

True story about one US and one USSR delegate who, during 1982 talks in Geneva between USA and USSR on limiting medium-range nukes in Europe, met by accident in a nearby forest while on a stroll and informally started a key discussion.

Director:

Kirk Browning

Writer:

Lee Blessing
Reviews

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

More Like This 

Adventure | Biography | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

After spending two decades in England, Bill Bryson returns to the U.S., where he decides the best way to connect with his homeland is to hike the Appalachian Trail with one of his oldest friends.

Director: Ken Kwapis
Stars: Robert Redford, Nick Nolte, Emma Thompson
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

On the day of his wife's funeral, an old man revisits an emotive place from his childhood and comes face to face with the past.

Director: Mark Hampton
Stars: Richard Heffer, Alexander Boyd-Bench, Elliot Brown
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Using transcripts from the Warren Commission Report, this film documents the workings of the Warren Commission, which investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963.

Director: Mark Sobel
Stars: Martin Landau, Sam Waterston, Martin Sheen
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

An expatriated French novelist (Jeanne Moreau) returns to Paris when she learns that her childhood home is being placed on the auction block. What she doesn't count on is that she has to ... See full summary »

Director: Ismail Merchant
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Sean Young, Sam Waterston
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

On a flight through the arctic the crew of a RAF airplane realizes a crashed soviet plane on the ice. There seems to be one survivor, but landing is not possible at the moment. Finally ... See full summary »

Director: John Berry
Stars: Sam Waterston, Aleksandr Potapov, Keir Giles
Oppenheimer (1980)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Biography of the American physicist who led the U.S. effort to develop the atomic bomb during World War II, only to find himself suspected as a security risk in the 1950s because of his ... See full summary »

Stars: Sam Waterston, John Carson, Christopher Muncke
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The story of Johnson Whittaker, one of the first African-American cadets admitted to West Point. Tied down and beaten by his fellow cadets, Whittaker was court-martialed on the grounds that... See full summary »

Director: Harry Morgan Moses
Stars: Samuel L. Jackson, Sam Waterston, Mason Adams
Welcome Home (1989)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Jake died in Vietnam; his family mourned him, then moved on. When he reappears, quite alive, the question is, what must he do and how will his family respond to him?

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner
Stars: Kris Kristofferson, JoBeth Williams, Sam Waterston
Finnegan Begin Again (TV Movie 1985)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Mike Finnegan is nearing retirement and taking care of his senile wife. He can't get her to allow him to throw anything out and their house has become unmanageable. He meets Liz DeHaan, who... See full summary »

Director: Joan Micklin Silver
Stars: Mary Tyler Moore, Robert Preston, Sam Waterston
I'll Fly Away (1991–1993)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Forrest Bedford is a Southern lawyer in the late 1950s, generally content with his privileged life. But the winds of change are blowing, and he becomes increasingly involved with civil ... See full summary »

Stars: Sam Waterston, Regina Taylor, Jeremy London
Lincoln (1988)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After arriving in Washington in 1861 after his election, Abraham Lincoln struggles with personal and political problems during his Presidency.

Stars: Sam Waterston, Mary Tyler Moore, Richard Mulligan
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Robert Prosky ... Andrey Botvinnik
Sam Waterston ... John Honeyman
Edit

Storyline

True story about one US and one USSR delegate who, during 1982 talks in Geneva between USA and USSR on limiting medium-range nukes in Europe, met by accident in a nearby forest while on a stroll and informally started a key discussion.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1988 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The New York production of "A Walk in the Woods" by Lee Blessing opened at the Booth Theater in New York on February 28, 1988, ran for 137 performances and was nominated for the 1988 Tony Award for the Best Play. Sam Waterston recreated his stage role in the filmed production as did Robert Prosky who also was nominated for the 1988 Tony Award for Best Actor in Play. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Impressive but outdated.

Lee Blessing's two-hander 'A Walk in the Woods' is fiction, but based on a true incident from the last years of the Cold War. During the 1982 Geneva peace negotiations, American delegate Paul Nitze would occasionally stroll through the nearby forest between negotiation sessions. During one of these walks, he encountered Yuli Kvitsinsky, a member of the Soviet delegation. (I'm slightly surprised that these men were able to meet surreptitiously, without security agents from both sides tailing them.) In an informal setting away from bureaucratic protocol, these two men of good will were able to discuss nuclear brinkmanship (and possible solutions) far more honestly than they were able to do at the negotiating table.

Before viewing this television production, I first saw 'A Walk in the Woods' onstage at the Booth Theatre in New York City. The theatre was filled with rich American liberals who were clearly hostile to their own nation's government, and receptive to the Soviet viewpoint. (So why don't they move there, then?) Nearly every line spoken by Botvinnik (the fictional Russian character) received laughter or applause, while Honeyman (the American character) clearly had an uphill battle to engage the audience's sympathies. Why does this foolish American insist on protecting his nation's interests? Doesn't he realise that, in order to attain international peace, America must drop its defences and trust the Soviets? On the other hand, the wise old Soviet delegate is absolutely right to keep his guard up and protect his own nation's interests: that's his job, after all. I seethed in rage as the above double standard unfolded on the stage in front of me, to the smug approval of the audience all round me.

My memories of the stage play were so painful that I almost didn't watch this television version. In the event, I'm glad that I did. Here is the same Broadway cast (Prosky and Waterston, both excellent), but with a different director ... and the television format enables me to watch the drama in solitude, without wallowing in the limousine-liberal pieties of a Broadway audience. It was almost an entirely new show! As performed here, the two roles are more evenly balanced than in the stage version, with Sam Waterston's protagonist sharing our sympathy. The fictional John Honeyman, to his credit, is obsessed with obtaining international peace. His Soviet counterpart is more interested in details of American culture (such as Willie Nelson) and eyedrops for his own medical condition. Andrey Botvinnik isn't worried: he realises that his job as a Soviet bureaucrat is a lifetime sinecure, whereas Honeyman is in danger of losing his job with the next U.S. election.

After comparing the stage and tele-productions, I now wonder if perhaps Lee Blessing did intentionally skew our sympathies towards the Russian character. In the real-life situation which inspired this play, Paul Nitze was significantly older than Yuli Kvitsinsky: wiser, more experienced in diplomacy. Blessing has intentionally reversed the characters' ages, making the Russian the calmer and cooler diplomat, and the American impetuous and excitable.

In real life, I'm pleased that the United States won the Cold War. 'A Walk in the Woods' is enjoyable and well-staged, but it can only be regarded as a period piece. Events have overtaken this play: now, we have less cause to worry about the Soviet bloc, and far more cause to worry about Jihadists who lurk in the dark. May America prevail against that madness. I'll rate 'A Walk in the Woods' 7 out of 10.


6 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 3 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can 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 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