MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 31,280 this week

Buck Rogers (1939)

7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 554 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 6 critic

A pilot and his young passenger crash-land on a mountaintop and are put into suspended animation by a strange gas. They awake 500 years later to discover that the Earth is now ruled by a ... See full summary »

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Norman Hall) , (screenplay), 2 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: March

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in March.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 1655 titles
created 18 Sep 2011
 
a list of 244 titles
created 20 Apr 2012
 
a list of 25 images
created 28 Jun 2012
 
a list of 37 titles
created 02 Jan 2013
 
a list of 31 titles
created 18 Feb 2014
 

Related Items

Search for "Buck Rogers" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Buck Rogers (1939)

Buck Rogers (1939) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Buck Rogers.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Sci-Fi | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

"Guardian of the Safety of the World", private citizen-scientist Captain Video, assisted by his teenage helper The Ranger and an army of Video Rangers, preserves the peace in the far-off ... See full summary »

Stars: Don Hastings, Al Hodge, Ben Lackland
Superman (1941)
Certificate: Passed Animation | Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The Man of Steel fights a mad scientist who is destroying Metropolis with an energy cannon.

Director: Dave Fleischer
Stars: Bud Collyer, Joan Alexander, Jackson Beck
Musical | Sci-Fi | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

When the ancient continent of Mu sank beneath the ocean, some of its inhabitant survived in caverns beneath the sea. Cowboy singer Gene Autry stumbles upon the civilization, now buried ... See full summary »

Directors: Otto Brower, B. Reeves Eason
Stars: Gene Autry, Frankie Darro, Betsy King Ross
Fantastic 4 (TV Series 1967)
Animation | Family | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Four costumed superheroes battle the world's most terrifying villains.

Stars: Gerald Mohr, Paul Frees, Jack Flounders
Certificate: Passed Action | Adventure | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Tarzan's jungle home, and his family, Jane and Boy, are threatened by men greedy for gold.

Director: Richard Thorpe
Stars: Johnny Weissmuller, Maureen O'Sullivan, Johnny Sheffield
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

It's Taxidermy Tech vs. Anthropology A&M for this introduction to college football (first piece of special equipment needed: a campus covered in ivy). Among the names borrowed for players: ... See full summary »

Director: Jack Kinney
Stars: Pinto Colvig
Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
...
Buck Rogers (as Larry 'Buster' Crabbe)
Constance Moore ...
Jackie Moran ...
Jack Mulhall ...
...
C. Montague Shaw ...
Prof. Huer
Guy Usher ...
William Gould ...
Philson Ahn ...
Prince Tallen
...
Capt. Laska
Wheeler Oakman ...
Lt. Patten
Kenne Duncan ...
Lt. Lacy (as Kenneth Duncan)
Carleton Young ...
Scott
Reed Howes ...
Capt. Roberts
Edit

Storyline

A pilot and his young passenger crash-land on a mountaintop and are put into suspended animation by a strange gas. They awake 500 years later to discover that the Earth is now ruled by a tyrannical despot called Killer Kane, and they lead a fight to overthrow him. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You followed Buck Rogers adventures in the newspapers! You heard him on the radio! Now SEE HIM for the time in the most fantastic adventures ever filmed! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 April 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Buck Rogers Conquers the Universe  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(12 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The character of Killer Kane was changed, too: in the original strip, his real name was Oba Kane, he had a twin brother named Nova and a pistol called "Baby". He also had a girlfriend named Ardala Valmar. The regulations would not allow any of this background to be used, either: instead, Oba "Killer" Kane is presented as the despotic ruler of a future Earth. See more »

Goofs

When Buck and Buddy infiltrate the council on Saturn, the second soldier reacts to being shot by Buck's laser gun before he is shot. See more »

Quotes

George 'Buddy' Wade: I wouldn't call Dr. Huer exactly handsome, but I sure would give a lot to see his face right now.
Buck Rogers: [laughs] I bet you would Buddy.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Star Trek: Voyager: Bride of Chaotica! (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Some of the music cues originally were composed for the following films:
The Bride of Frankenstein (1935) music composed by Franz Waxman
Mystery of Edwin Drood (1935) composed by Edward Ward
Werewolf of London (1935) composed by Karl Hajos
Dracula's Daughter (1936) composed by Heinz Roemheld
Great Expectations (1934) composed by Edward Ward
The Invisible Man (1933) composed by Heinz Roemheld
Bombay Mail (1934) composed by Heinz Roemheld
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Entertaining but weaker than the "Flash Gordon" franchise
23 August 2007 | by (Oklahoma) – See all my reviews

I can't help comparing this 1939 serial to "Flash Gordon" (1936) and "Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe" (1940). Although some of the special effects (the ray guns and fleets of spaceships) are superior, "Buck Rogers" is less fun. It's not the fault of Buster Crabbe, who invests Rogers with the same heroic energy he gave to Gordon. And Jackie Moran shines as sidekick Buddy Wade (in the newspaper strip he was Buddy Deering, Wilma's younger brother). But the other actors fall short. So does the story and pacing.

Anthony Wade's Killer Kane is a colorless villain, lacking the panache of Charles Middleton's gleefully evil Ming the Merciless. He badly needs a slinky, sinister Ardala Valmar to spice things up. Constance Moore is a competent Wilma Deering but there's no chemistry between her and Crabbe. Moore lacks the passion Jean Rogers exhibited as Dale Arden in the "Flash" series or the breezy camaraderie Erin Gray displayed as Wilma Deering in the 1980s "Buck Rogers" television show. C. Montague Shaw is OK as Doctor Huer but doesn't have nearly as much to do as Frank Shannon's Doctor Zarkov (again, from the "Flash" serials).

After an exciting start, the serial falls down in the latter six episodes. It is typical of the genre to have a late episode replay scenes from earlier in the series to pad things out. But "Buck Rogers" does this twice. Serial plots also tend to have a lot of captures, escapes, and re-captures. "Flash Gordon" broke the monotony by having these occur in a variety of ways in a variety of locations. "Buck Rogers" has only two destinations: Earth and Saturn. Both planets apparently share the same rocky desert terrain. Doctor Huer has only one technological gimmick to help Buck. The heroes get stranded by crashed spaceships seemingly every other episode. And Kane's goons never tumble to the fact that it's Rogers driving that rocket cruiser reported missing from their hangar.

Given it's charismatic hero and quality special effects, "Buck Rogers" could have equaled or surpassed "Flash Gordon" if it had had stronger writing or more energetic secondary characters. Unfortunately, it has neither.


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
I can't believe how blatant that was... Forgotten_Hero
Destination Saturn vs Planet Outlaws gorgya
What's the background on Killer Kane? Forgotten_Hero
Discuss Buck Rogers (1939) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?