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WarGames (1983)

PG | | Sci-Fi, Thriller | 3 June 1983 (USA)
A young man finds a back door into a military central computer in which reality is confused with game-playing, possibly starting World War III.


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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kent Williams ...
Joe Dorsey ...
Irving Metzman ...
Susan Davis ...
David Clover ...


A young computer whiz kid accidentally connects into a top secret super-computer which has complete control over the U.S. nuclear arsenal. It challenges him to a game between America and Russia, and he innocently starts the countdown to World War 3. Can he convince the computer he wanted to play a game and not the real thing ? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


"Global Thermonuclear War." You may think it's one hell of a game. You couldn't be more right. See more »


Sci-Fi | Thriller


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

3 June 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Genius  »


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,227,804, 5 June 1983, Wide Release

Gross USA:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The harmonica music was added at the last minute. Composer Arthur B. Rubinstein says it's the one thing fans always remember about the score. See more »


The movie is set in the early 1980's. The OS used in the NORAD network would have been UNIX. No version of UNIX would allow a user to login with out a user name and a password. The use of the word Joshua for login purposes is a plot device used to give the WOPR an form of empathy towards Prof. Falken. See more »


David Lightman: [typing] People sometimes make mistakes.
Joshua: Yes, they do.
See more »


Features Gravitar (1982) See more »


Video Fever
Performed by Arthur B. Rubinstein, Cynthia Morrow, Brian Banks and Anthony Marinelli (as The Beepers)
Lyrics by Cynthia Morrow
Music by Arthur B. Rubinstein
Produced by Anthony Marinelli (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An Old Favorite For Many
18 April 2007 | by See all my reviews

This was an old favorite for many younger baby-boomers, who were teenagers and in their twenties at the dawn of the personal computer age.

This one was a bit more than amusing, though. It opened many eyes to both the potential and the dangers we faced while coming into the computer age. The government had these marvelous machines and the internet by which they communicated for decades before the public was given access from these ancient Commodore 64's, Amigas, and Atari home computers via phone line, back in the late 1970's.

While this work is entertaining, it also bears a valid warning, even today.

Broderick and Ally Sheedy both were 21, playing 17 year olds, competently.

It rates a 7.6/10 from...

the Fiend :.

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