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The Final Countdown (1980)

 -  Action | Sci-Fi  -  1 August 1980 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 14,507 users  
Reviews: 137 user | 45 critic

A modern aircraft carrier is thrown back in time to 1941 near Hawaii, just hours before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

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(story), (story), 5 more credits »
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Stars: Kirk Douglas, Michael A. Goorjian, Karen Tucker
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Laurel Scott
...
Cdr. Richard Owens / Mr.Tideman
...
Cdr. Dan Thurman
...
Senator Samuel Chapman
Victor Mohica ...
Black Cloud
James Coleman ...
Lt. Perry (as James C. Lawrence)
...
Simura (as Soon-Teck Oh)
Joe Lowry ...
Cdr. Damon
...
Lt. Kajima
Mark Thomas ...
Marine Cpl. Kullman
Harold Bergman ...
Bellman
...
Navy Doctor
...
LCdr. Kaufman
Edit

Storyline

An American nuclear aircraft carrier and its crew are caught in a classic dilemma when a supernatural storm sends them back in time just before the Japanese assault on Pearl Harbor. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

On December 7, 1980 --- The nuclear carrier USS Nimitz disappeared in the Pacific...and reappeared December 7, 1941...the day the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour See more »

Genres:

Action | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

1 August 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der letzte Countdown  »

Box Office

Gross:

SEK 2,722,598 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

During shooting of the opening shot where the CAG's Tomcat is taking off from Pearl Harbor, the film crew actually underestimated the blast radius of the Tomcat's exhaust and one of their cameras was blown over when the plane went to full afterburner, which resulted in the shot being filmed from a slightly different angle than originally planned. See more »

Goofs

While flying out to the ship, the Russian trawler- isn't. Real trawlers were larger ships designed to shadow our fleet units for long period of time, monitoring our radio spectrum as well as our procedures, and frequently reporting data via radio circuits; this requires an extensive antenna system for SIGINT and ELINT, and RFDF, of which the little fishing boat has none. The average 'trawler' was 300 feet in length, over 3000 tons, and carried a crew of about 150. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
F-14 Pilot: [voice over radio] Pearl Tower, Tomcat two-zero-zero. requesting clearance for departure runway zero-nine. Over.
Pearl Harbor Tower: [voice over radio] Two-zero-zero, Pearl Harbor Tower. You are cleared runway oh-niner. Winds zero-four-five at eight. SH-three approaching from the right. Have a nice day.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Danger Zone: The Making of 'Top Gun' (2004) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A Guilty Pleasure
5 December 2001 | by (St. Petersburg, FL, USA) – See all my reviews

There are great films ("Citizen Kane," eg), and there are "big films", like "ET" or "Star Wars." Then there are absolute crap films (eg, WAY too-many to list!). I propose another legitimate category: "Guilty Pleasure Films." These are movies that one can see over and over, through countless repetitions on cable and broadcast channels, and enjoy the experience every time.

For example, I have probably seen "Brighton Beach Memoirs" 40 times. I loved it during its first run, and I've loved it each of the 39 times I've seen it on the small screen. No, it's not a great movie, but it's one that brings me pleasure when I watch it. Same with (blush) "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure": the movie's stupid, but it just always entertains me!

Similarly, nobody is going to compare "The Final Countdown" to "2001: A Space Odyssey" as far as absolute quality, but "The Final Countdown" is a classic example of an unabashed "guilty pleasure" movie.

The story is intriguing--what would YOU do if you were commanding a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier full of supersonic jets, etc, when you were transferred through a time-warp (ref: a CHEESY looking laser and smoke effect storm!) to December 6, 1941?? Would you alter history, just to win a battle against those attacking Pearl Harbor? Or would you hold back because you'd change history if you did anything?

Interesting point! Kirk Douglas, as the ship's captain, looks like he's having a ball acting in this, and Martin Sheen does a great job as the "civilian consultant," Mr. Laskey.

No, this movie isn't an Oscar-winner, nor did it really deserve to be. But I'll put it this way. A local independant station showed "The Final Countdown" tonight at the same time TNN was showing "The Godfather 2" uncut.

I spent maybe five minutes on the Oscar-winning Godfather 2. Yes, it is an empirically great film, but I've seen it once before. But with American fighter jets dogfighting 1941 Japanese Zeros, I was FAR more entertained watching "The Final Countdown" for the 10th time!


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Message Boards

Recent Posts
Paradox or plot hole? cartwright33
The Cdr. Richard Owens / Mr.Tideman Paradox DigIt
PLEASE REMAKE THIS FILM!!! mdrnpirate
Richard would have had to rapidly age... ninetymin
UFOs... raketex
Watched 'The Final Countdown' a Second Time asbrand1
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