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The Dark Crystal (1982)

PG  |   |  Adventure, Family, Fantasy  |  17 December 1982 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 39,153 users  
Reviews: 210 user | 81 critic

On another planet in the distant past, a Gelfling embarks on a quest to find the missing shard of a magical crystal, and so restore order to his world.




(screenplay), (story)
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kathryn Mullen ...
Fizzgig, a Friendly Monster (performer) / General, Garthim Master (performer)
Scientist (voice)
Louise Gold ...
Brian Muehl ...
Ornamentalist (performer and voice) / Urzah (performer) / Dying Master (performer and voice)
Bob Payne ...
Jean-Pierre Amiel ...
Weaver (performer) (as Jean Pierre Amiel)
Hugh Spight ...
Cook (performer) / Landstrider (performer)
Robbie Barnett ...
Numerologist (performer) / Landstrider (performer)
Swee Lim ...
Hunter (performer) / Landstrider (performer)
Simon J. Williamson ...
Chanter (performer) (as Simon Williamson)


Another planet, another time. 1000 years ago the mysterious Dark Crystal was damaged by one of the Urskeks and an age of chaos has began! The evil race of grotesque birdlike lizards the Skeksis, gnomish dragons who rule their fantastic planet with an iron claw. Meanwhile the orphan Jen, raised in solitude by a race of the peace-loving wizards called the Mystics, embarks on a quest to find the missing shard of the Dark Crystal which gives the Skesis their power and restore the balance of the universe. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Another World, Another Time... In the Age of Wonder.


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

17 December 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Dark Chrysalis  »

Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Jim Henson personally trimmed twenty minutes from the film after a disastrous preview in San Francisco. Henson also ordered many of the character voices re-dubbed to eliminate some of the invented character languages to make the film more accessible and the plot easier to follow. See more »


The Gelfling puppets have three fingers and one thumb on each hand. When Kira and Jen make their way into the castle via a mouth-like entrance, Kira's right hand has five fingers in the long shot (actors, not puppets, were used for long shots of the Gelflings). See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: Another world, another time, in the age of wonder. A thousand years ago, this land was green and good - until the Crystal cracked. For a single piece was lost; a shard of the Crystal. Then strife began, and two new races appeared: the cruel Skeksis, the gentle Mystics. Here in the castle of the Crystal, the Skeksis took control. Now the Skeksis gather in the sacred chamber, where the Crystal hangs above a shaft of air and fire. The Skeksis with their hard and twisted bodies, their ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits show only the credits for the crew. See more »


Referenced in The Goldbergs: Cowboy Country (2015) See more »


The Pod Dance
Written by Trevor Jones
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Still a great fantasy tale
27 April 2002 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The Dark Crystal holds well against the test of time. It has been only recently that movies that take place in a completely different fantasy world ("The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring") have become more feasible. Still, the Dark Crystal stands as an excellent tale of good versus evil.

Jim Henson and crew spent much to much time creating this movie, and the depth of their effort shows. However, some adults might find the story simplistic, and it is in the same manner that Labyrinth is. However, like Labyrinth, Dark Crystal succeeds in taking you to another place and immersing you in another world.

If you are a viewer interested in fantasy worlds, Dark Crystal will please you well. If you haven't seen it in years, get the DVD. It has a wonderful "making of" section, deleted funeral scenes, and isolated musical score.

38 of 43 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why didn't Aughra heal the Dark Crystal herself? jessicahjoy87
What disturbed you most about this film? crazytwinks13
Dark Crystal or Labyrinth nessanddave
A Masterpiece matthewcs25
Puppet monsters with glowing eyes are scary, CGI monsters are not lisacamillek
Miscellaneous and plot hole gibsonrickenbacker-1
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