6.5/10
41,918
258 user 105 critic

Flash Gordon (1980)

A football player and his friends travel to the planet Mongo and find themselves fighting the tyranny of Ming the Merciless to save Earth.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
1,904 ( 714)

Watch Now

From $9.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Video game expert Alex Rogan finds himself transported to another planet after conquering The Last Starfighter video game only to find out it was just a test. He was recruited to join the team of best starfighters to defend their world from the attack.

Director: Nick Castle
Stars: Lance Guest, Robert Preston, Kay E. Kuter
TRON (1982)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A computer hacker is abducted into the digital world and forced to participate in gladiatorial games where his only chance of escape is with the help of a heroic security program.

Director: Steven Lisberger
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Bruce Boxleitner, David Warner
Krull (1983)
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A prince and a fellowship of companions set out to rescue his bride from a fortress of alien invaders who have arrived on their home planet.

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Ken Marshall, Lysette Anthony, Freddie Jones
Excalibur (1981)
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Merlin the magician helps Arthur Pendragon unite the Britons around the Round Table of Camelot, even as dark forces conspire to tear it apart.

Director: John Boorman
Stars: Nigel Terry, Helen Mirren, Nicholas Clay
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A barbarian warrior sets off to avenge his parents and his tribe whom were slain by an evil sorcerer and his henchmen when he was a boy.

Director: John Milius
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones, Max von Sydow
Cocoon (1985)
Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When a group of trespassing seniors swim in a pool containing alien cocoons, they find themselves energized with youthful vigor.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Don Ameche, Wilford Brimley, Hume Cronyn
Enemy Mine (1985)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A soldier from Earth crashlands on an alien world after sustaining battle damage. Eventually, he encounters another survivor, but from the enemy species he was fighting. They band together ... See full summary »

Director: Wolfgang Petersen
Stars: Dennis Quaid, Louis Gossett Jr., Brion James
Innerspace (1987)
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A hapless store clerk must foil criminals to save the life of the man who, miniaturized in a secret experiment, was accidentally injected into him.

Director: Joe Dante
Stars: Dennis Quaid, Martin Short, Meg Ryan
Dragonslayer (1981)
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A young wizarding apprentice is sent to kill a dragon which has been devouring girls from a nearby kingdom.

Director: Matthew Robbins
Stars: Peter MacNicol, Caitlin Clarke, Ralph Richardson
Willow (1988)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A reluctant dwarf must play a critical role in protecting a special baby from an evil queen.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley, Warwick Davis
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
The Emperor Ming (as Max Von Sydow)
...
...
...
...
...
...
John Osborne ...
...
...
...
...
Serving Girl
...
Edit

Storyline

Flash Gordon is an American football hero who is skyjacked aboard Dr. Hans Zarkov's rocketship along with his beautiful girlfriend Dale Arden. The threesome are drawn into the influence of the planet Mongo, ruled by Emperor Ming the Merciless. The evil Ming has been testing Earth with unnatural disasters, and deeming our world a threat to his rule. He also intends to take Dale as his concubine, attempts to execute Flash and intends to destroy Earth. Flash must avoid the amorous attentions of Ming's daughter, and unite the warring kingdoms of Mongo to rescue Dale and save our world. Written by David Thiel <d-thiel@uiuc.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He'll save every one of us! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

|

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

5 December 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blixt Gordon  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,934,030, 7 December 1980, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$27,107,960, 31 December 1981
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

There was a considerable language barrier on-set, due to having English and Italian crews. See more »

Goofs

After General Kala announces the execution of Zarkov and Barin, there is a small scene when the gold faced guards are lined up and ordered to march by their superior (in some distorted voice). The distorted voice matches the mouth movements of the superior for several words, then doesn't as his mouth is closed. However, the voice continues to sound off. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Emperor Ming: Klytus, I'm bored. What play thing can you offer me today?
Klytus: An obscure body in the S-K System, Your Majesty. The inhabitants refer to it as the planet... Earth.
The Emperor Ming: How peaceful it looks.
[He activates a console, and watches as earthquakes, floods, etc. start to occur. They both get a good laugh out of it]
Klytus: Most effective, Your Majesty! Will you destroy this, er, Earth?
The Emperor Ming: Later. I like to play with thing a while... before annihilation.
[laughs evilly]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are being played along with various clips of the original comic book strips, along with drawings of character models, all accompanied by the trademark song "Flash" by Queen. See more »

Connections

Featured in Troldspejlet: Episode #27.9 (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

In The Death Cell (Love Theme Reprise)
Written by Roger Taylor
Performed by Queen
Orchestra arranged and conducted by Howard Blake
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Cardboard, disposable and tremendous fun
30 December 2002 | by See all my reviews

After a plane crash in extreme weather, Flash Gordon and his travelling companion Dale Arden after abducted by Dr Zarkov to help pilot his spaceship to confront what he believes is an attack from space. Once in space Flash comes faces to face with the cause of the extreme weather, Ming the Merciless and is sentenced to death. Saved from death by Ming's lustful daughter Flash sets out to save his friends and stop Ming with the help of the leaders of the kingdoms.

Even when this was brand new I suspect it looked out dated and a throwback kind of appeal. More than 20 years later this definitely is appreciated as a laugh by about as many people who genuinely enjoy it on it's own merits. The plot is well known to most people I suspect – I know it from the 25 minute b/w `classic' series that BBC2 repeated in the mornings when I was only a lad in the 80's. But it is easily nutshelled as above. The story moves alone at a good pace despite the poor effects and is actually pretty exciting.

The effects are poor – even for 1980's the back projection is rubbish and the costumes are silly. Compare it to the advances made in Star Wars and stuff years before and it looks weak. However the vision is ambitious and it works well if you accept the weaknesses from the start. Another weakness is the acting from ranges from wooden to just plain hammy. Jones is perfect as Flash, despite being wooden as a tree. He comes over like a 30's matinee idol type, which is just what the fun mood of the film needed. Anderson is awful but again just accept the weaknesses. Von Sydow is good as Ming and Topol is a little unhinged as Zarkov. Blessed hams it up so much you could slice him and serve him with pineapple but he also suits the film well. Dalton, O'Brien, Blue Peter's Peter Duncan and Robbie Coltrane and several other unexpected Brits turn up which is nice.

If you're not sure if this film is for you then watch the first 20 minutes. By that time you'll have seen two key things that sum up the film. Firstly you'll have sat through the extremely cool theme song from Queen. That gets me in the mood every time I hear it! Secondly you'll see a fight with Ming the Merciless' men where Flash takes them on in a form of American Football fighting! Both this scene and the music are a little silly and quite camp but if you like these then the rest of the film will suit you fine.

Personally I love this movie and watch it every repeat I see. It is silly and has plenty of weakness, but more than all these things it is incredibly fun to watch! Sing it with me now – `FLASH! AH-AH! HE'LL SAVE EVERYONE OF US!'


74 of 90 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 258 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

"This Is Us" Star Chris Sullivan and TV to See in 2018

"This Is Us" star Chris Sullivan gets emotional about Season 2. Plus, "The IMDb Show" looks at the most highly-anticipated TV shows of 2018 and talks to Lena Waithe about "The Chi."

Watch the show