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E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

PG  |   |  Family, Sci-Fi  |  11 June 1982 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 263,952 users   Metascore: 94/100
Reviews: 499 user | 210 critic | 26 from Metacritic.com

A troubled child summons the courage to help a friendly alien escape Earth and return to his home-world.


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Won 4 Oscars. Another 46 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael (as Robert Macnaughton)
K.C. Martel ...
Tyler (as Tom Howell)
David M. O'Dell ...
Schoolboy (as David O'Dell)
Richard Swingler ...
Frank Toth ...
Robert Barton ...
Michael Darrell ...
David Berkson ...
Medical Unit (as David Berkson M.D.)


While visiting the Earth at Night, a group of alien botanists is discovered and disturbed by an approaching human task force. Because of the more than hasty take-off, one of the visitors is left behind. The little alien finds himself all alone on a very strange planet. Fortunately, the extra-terrestrial soon finds a friend and emotional companion in 10-year-old Elliot, a lonely boy whose parents have separated. While E.T. slowly gets acquainted with Elliot's older brother Michael, his sister Gertie and the customs of Earth, members of the task force work day and night to track down the whereabouts of Earth's first visitor from outer space. The wish to go home again is strong in E.T., and after being able to communicate with Elliot and the others, E.T. starts building an improvised device to send a message home for his people to come and pick him up. But before long, E.T. gets seriously sick, and because of his special connection to Elliot, the young boy suffers, too. The situation ... Written by Julian Reischl <julianreischl@mac.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


His Adventure On Earth See more »


Family | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language and mild thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

11 June 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Boy's Life  »

Box Office


$10,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$11,911,430 (USA) (11 June 1982)


£1,737,374 (UK) (12 April 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


At one point during filming, Drew Barrymore was consistently forgetting her lines, annoying Steven Spielberg to the point where he actually yelled at her. He later found out that she had reported to work with a very high fever. Feeling guilty, he hugged her and apologized repeatedly as she cried and cried. He then sent her home - with a note from her director. See more »


When E.T. is walking outside during Halloween, the eye holes on his sheet are far apart and only one is matched up to his eyes. However, the shots of what E.T. is seeing through his sheet show the two eye holes lined up close together. See more »


[first lines]
Steve: [reading dice] Five.
Michael: Oh, great.
Steve: So you got an arrow right in your chest.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the 2002 special edition release, the movie opens with a sillouette of E.T. in basket with Elliot on bike flying in front of the Universal logo. See more »


Spoofed in Tiny Toon Adventures: Hare Today, Gone Tomorrow (1990) See more »


Composed by Jenifer Smith
Performed by Jenifer Smith, Peter Meissner, Joe Scrima, Bob Parr
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

It's a Masterpiece
2 March 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

There are those times when all the forces at work come together and you have a masterpiece. This, of course, is a kids' movie. Obviously, it is so much more. It is a story of love and heart and character. To begin with, as a middle school teacher, I can attest to the wonderful casting and writing. It doesn't insult us. It shows us how a person who knows the heart of humanity (and that extends to the alien nation) can transcend cliché and put forth a beautiful story--but not a lightweight one by any means. The adults make up the periphery. The childlike quality of the lovable alien could only be appreciated and cared for by those who have not become as jaded as they. As soon as those adult figures show up, everyone is in trouble. Yet, for the most part, they have good intentions. The government agents are another issue. They bring force and death.

Who hasn't seen this. There are series of episodes that have become part of our cultural landscape. Words have been brought into our language. We speak along with Elliot and ET. Halloween, phoning home, frogs all over the lab, hiding in the closet among the stuffed animals, the bike ride where the bikes suddenly leave the ground, the touching of the finger and the heart. It's just magical. Sometimes when one sees a movie, one begins to say, "If only they had done this or that." I can't think of anything in this film. Why write this review. Just to include my two cents' worth.

55 of 80 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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