Silkwood Poster

Release Date: May 24th, 1983

DVD Release Date: June 15th, 1999

R|2 hr 11 min

Plot Summary
This drama is based on the true story of Karen Silkwood (Meryl Streep), who works at a nuclear facility, along with her boyfriend, Drew Stephens (Kurt Russell), and their roommate, Dolly Pelliker (Cher). When Karen becomes concerned about safety practices at the plant, she begins raising awareness of violations that could put workers at risk. Intent on continuing her investigation, Karen discovers a suspicious development: She has been exposed to high levels of radiation.

Cast: Meryl Streep, Kurt Russell, Cher , Craig T. Nelson, Diana Scarwid, Fred Ward, Ron Silver, Charles Hallahan

Director: Mike Nichols

Genres: Docudrama

Keywords: 1970s, Fall, Emotional, Underdog, Friend, Tense

Ratings & Reviews

view all
  • That could have been a good movie, but predictable. Mike Nichols' Silkwood is not predictable.... We realize this is a lot more movie than perhaps we were expecting. show more

  • Mike Nichols, in his first venture into movies since "The Fortune," elicited superlative performances from the actors, particularly Streep and stage veteran Sudi Bond. show more

  • Fueled by Meryl Streep's performance in the title role, energized by Nora Ephron and Alice Arlen's script and tempered by Mike Nichols' understated direction, Silkwood is a brilliant movie that puts art above polemics, and the facts above speculation. [14 Dec 1983]

See all critic reviews on


Nominated Actress
British Academy of Film & Television Arts (1984)
Nominated Film Editing
Nominated Best Performance By an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture
Nominated Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated Best Performance By an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama
Nominated Best Director - Motion Picture
Nominated Best Motion Picture - Drama
Nominated Directing
Nominated Writing (Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen)