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Flash Gordon (1980)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi  |  5 December 1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 34,797 users   Metascore: 63/100
Reviews: 243 user | 96 critic | 6 from

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



(screenplay), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
The Emperor Ming (as Max Von Sydow)
John Osborne ...
Arborian Priest
John Hallam ...
Philip Stone ...
Zogi, the High Priest
Suzanne Danielle ...
Serving Girl


In this update of the 1930s comic strip, Flash Gordon is a football hero who is skyjacked aboard Dr. Hans Zarkov's rocketship along with beautiful Dale Arden. The threesome are drawn into the influence of the planet Mongo, ruled by Emperor Ming the Merciless. Ming has been testing the Earth with unnatural disasters, and deeming it a threat to his rule, he plans to destroy it. He also intends to take Dale as his concubine. 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 <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Pathetic earthlings... Who can save you now? See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

5 December 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blixt Gordon  »

Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)


SEK 2,341,328 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)


(Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


All the main actors were signed for multiple films but the sequels were never made since the first movie didn't do as well as expected. See more »


Again in the same fight, some of the spikes on the fighting platform can be seen folding under both Prince Barin and Flash's body as they fall on them (watch closely as the scene changes quickly), clearly showing that the spikes are made of rubber. See more »


[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 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 »


Referenced in Paul (2011) See more »


Written by Brian May
Produced by Brian May and Mack (Reinhold Mack)
Performed by Queen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Better than Star Wars
26 March 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I'm not even joking. It's quite possibly one of the worst films ever made, but that is what makes it so marvellous. Loud, cheesy, poorly acted and about as subtle as a pitchfork rammed up the bum. Based on the long- running strips originally written by Alex Raymond, it tells the story of all- American goodie Flash Gordon and his teleportation onto the planet Mongo, lorded over by the eviler- than- evil Ming the Merciless, who has eyes on Flash's lady friend, Dale Arden. If you are a fan of comic books, the sci-fi genre, Queen, or, like me, all three, then this is, simply put perfect entertainment. They should make more films like this- cheesy, camp and stupid. by the way, if you hate this because you think it is too stupid, you REALLY don't understand it!!


45 of 76 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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