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Fire with Fire is a 1986 American romantic drama film about a young woman from a Catholic boarding school who runs away with an escapee from a nearby prison camp. The film stars Virginia Madsen, Craig Sheffer, Jon Polito, Kate Reid, Kari Wuhrer, Tim Russ and D. B. Sweeney. It was directed by Duncan Gibbins, and features a soundtrack by noted film composer Howard Shore. It was released on VHS in 1986 by its own studio and on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on July 31, 2012, by Olive Films and is now available for online streaming rental and download buying through Amazon, Apple's iTunes Store and Vudu. The film was shot and produced under the original title ‘Captive Hearts’, but was changed to ‘Fire with Fire’ just prior to the film’s theatrical release. Due to the late change in title, press-kit stills are seen with the original title initials CH, followed by a hyphen and the press still number, etched onto the film negatives and carried over onto the printed stills. The film’s new title was deemed more descriptive and exciting, as well as allowing a marketing tie-in with a song of the same title, ‘Fire with Fire’ by the 1980s band Wild Blue.

Fire with Fire
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDuncan Gibbins
Produced byGary Nardino
Screenplay byBen Pillips
Warren Skaaren
Paul Boorstin
Sharon Boorstin
Music byHoward Shore
CinematographyHiro Narita
Edited byPeter E. Berger
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • May 9, 1986 (1986-05-09)
Running time
103 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$4,636,169


In this fact-based adolescent melodrama, Joe Fisk is a juvenile delinquent who falls in love with Lisa Taylor, a beautiful Catholic girls' school student, in an Oregon forest. The two meet by accident when the troubled young man stumbles upon her while being chased by his peers in a training exercise, and sees the lovely girl floating in a small lake as she works on a photography assignment, recreating the Pre-Raphaelite painting Ophelia by John Everett Millais. The two are immediately drawn to each other, but neither of their custodians encourage contact with the opposite sex, and when their relationship is discovered there is trouble all around, forcing the young lovers to flee. The question then remains: Will they be able to escape the law and other authorities long enough to find happiness?


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