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1941 (1979)

PG  |   |  Action, Comedy, War  |  14 December 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 24,068 users  
Reviews: 212 user | 53 critic

Hysterical Californians prepare for a Japanese invasion in the days after Pearl Harbor.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ward Douglas
Joan Douglas
Claude Crumn
Capt. Wolfgang von Kleinschmidt
Cmdr. Akiro Mitamura (as Toshiro Mifune)
Cpl. Chuck 'Stretch' Sitarski
Lucille Benson ...
Gas Mama (Eloise) (as Lucille Bensen)
Jordan Brian ...
Macey Douglas


Hysteria grips California in the wake of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. An assorted group of defenders attempt to make the coast defensible against an imagined Japanese invasion, in this big budget, big cast comedy. Members of a Japanese submarine crew scout out the madness, along with a Captain in Germany's Kreigsmarine (Navy). Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Comedy Spectacular! See more »


Action | Comedy | War


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| | |

Release Date:

14 December 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Night the Japs Attacked  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)


SEK 5,051,675 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Robert Stack (General Joseph W. Stilwell) played Lieutenant Andrei Sobinski in To Be or Not to Be (1942) while Tim Matheson (Captain Loomis Birkhead) played him in the remake To Be or Not to Be (1983). See more »


Kelso Identifies himself to Maddox as "Captain Wild Bill Kelso, United States Army Air Corps". The US Army Air Corps was changed to The US Army Air Forces on June 20, 1941, about 6 months before the time setting of the film. See more »


[first lines]
Title Card: On December 7, 1941, the Naval Air Arm of the Imperial Japanese Fleet, in a surprise attack, struck the United States Naval Base at Pearl Harbor and hurtled an unsuspecting America into World War II.
Title Card: American citizens were stunned, shocked and outraged at this treacherous attack. On the West Coast, paranoia gripped the entire population as panic-stricken citizens were convinced that California was the next target of the Imperial Japanese Forces.
Title Card: Major General Joseph W. Stilwell, ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

End credits feature scenes showing cast members screaming. See more »


Spoofed in Return of the Killer Tomatoes! (1988) See more »


In the Mood
Written by Wingy Manone, Andy Razaf and Joe Garland
Performed by Glenn Miller and His Orchestra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Watch it
11 May 2001 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Any movie that features the following....:

1. The Geek from "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" torturing The Mayor from "Jaws" 2. A bunch of Japanese soldiers disguised as walking Christmas Trees 3. A hilarious USO dance sequence that boils over into an inter-service street fight 4. the film debut of Mickey Rourke and the big film debut of John Candy

and last but not least

5. Tough guy Robert Stack crying and singing along to songs from the Disney classic "Dumbo".....


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If John Landis done this movie it would´ve been a classic. old-skool101
What is it you hate about 1941 stepstonefilms
Something wrong here. VonRyan71
Sorry, but I really like this movie! KatrinaW
The word 'Jap' Jonhny
Couldn't buy a laugh parillamilt
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