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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 35,277 users   Metascore: 63/100
Reviews: 244 user | 96 critic | 6 from Metacritic.com

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 2 wins & 9 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 <d-thiel@uiuc.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

5 December 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blixt Gordon  »

Box Office


$20,000,000 (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
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Did You Know?


First film of Jim Carter. See more »


There are many blue-screen compositions where characters or items appear partly transparent. This is probably due to the copying process for the travelling mattes that were used to superimpose the effects shots over one another. 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

Closing credits: THE END ? See more »


Referenced in Operación Mantis (El exterminio del macho) (1985) See more »


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

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Greatest Movie of All-Time!!!
9 December 1998 | by (Memphis, Tennessee) – See all my reviews

Dino DeLaurentiis' Flash Gordon is one of those rare movies that captures the imagination of the viewer, and doesn't let go until the final moments. It truly has everything you could ever want in a movie: compelling plot (the QB of the New York Jets has approximately 24 hours to save the Earth from total annihilation), violence, gore, great acting (Timothy Dalton, Brian Blessed, Max Von Sydow), action (the "Football Fight" in Ming's palace), drama, sexual situations (Princess Aura seducing Flash in her rocket, Dale Arden in Ming's bedroom), and babes (Ornella Muti as Princess Aura, and Melody Anderson as Dale Arden.) What more can you ask for in a movie? Nothing, I tell you, NOTHING!!! Actually, having read other comments elsewhere, I am extremely disappointed in the almost universal panning of the 2 leads, Sam J. Jones and Melody Anderson. These two fine actors put forth a masterful performance, and made you really believe the situations their characters found themselves in. I can't speak highly enough of their abilities, as they were never as good in anything else than they were here. Flash Gordon is the greatest movie of all-time- it has to be the greatest ever, because I wouldn't watch a movie over 300 timess if it wasn't. You think I'm kidding, but I'm deadly serious. The first time I saw it in the theater- 18 years ago- I was hooked for life. Please, whatever you do, watch this movie over and over- you'll be glad you did.

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