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The Ice Pirates (1984)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure, Comedy  |  16 March 1984 (USA)
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In the far future water is the most valuable substance. Two space pirates are captured, sold to a princess, and recruited to help her find her father who disappeared when he found ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Supreme Commander
Natalie Core ...
Jeremy West ...
Count Paisley
Marcia Lewis ...
Frog Lady
Fitzcairn / Prisoner (as Daryl Roach)
Robert Symonds ...
Lanky Nibs
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Percy the Robot


In the far future water is the most valuable substance. Two space pirates are captured, sold to a princess, and recruited to help her find her father who disappeared when he found information dangerous to the rulers. A real Space Opera with sword fights, explosions, fighting robots, monsters, bar fights and time warps. Written by John Vogel <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


SEE A Universe on the rocks TREMBLE at the ferocious space possums! CATCH Space Herpie the Love Bug [Video Australia] See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

16 March 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ice Pirates  »

Box Office


$9,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of the final major Hollywood studio films of actor John Carradine. See more »


Jason: I don't mean anything by this but is there any particularly reason that he is black.
Roscoe: [smiling] Sure, I wanted him to be perfect.
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Referenced in Hierarchy (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

If you liked Mars Attacks! and Buckaroo Banzai ....
31 December 2004 | by (Syracuse, NY) – See all my reviews

This is the movie that killed Mary Crosby's career and nearly derailed Robert Urich's, Angelica Houston's and Ron Perlman's. It's one of those movies - like 1941 and Paint Your Wagon - that everyone knows is a total turkey, except for those who place what they see on the screen above what they read in the reviews. If you liked Mars Attacks! and Buckaroo Banzai, and laughed your ass off at Spaced Invaders and Killer Clowns from Outer Space, you'll love Ice Pirates.

The time is the distant future, where by far the most precious commodity in the galaxy is water. The idea that there were once ten planets whose surface was principally covered by water is considered a myth by most people, as is the story that the last surviving water planet was somehow removed to the unreachable center of the galaxy at the end of the galactic trade wars. The galaxy is ruled by your basic evil emperor (John Carradine) presiding over a trade oligarchy that controls all mining and sale of ice from asteroids and comets.

Robert Urich is Jason, leader of a band of ice pirates that includes Ron Perlman, John Matuzak and Michael D Roberts. Of course, the crew also prominently features the obligatory unbeatable master swordsman and latter-day samurai, but, in a blow for equality, the part is played to perfection by Angelica Houston. In the formulaic plot for outlaw space operas, our heroes attack an ice freighter, are captured, but escape with a princess (Mary Crosby) kidnapped by the evil emperor in tow. They rescue her, thread the perilous path to the center of the universe and the fabled tenth planet, and destroy the evil empire's stranglehold on the people.

Along the way, you are treated to some of film's oddest aliens, god-awful puns and excellent lampoons of space opera icons. It's full of bona fide toilet humor, from the pirates breaking through the hull of the ice freighter into a lavatory whose commode is occupied by a chickenman, to the standard reconditioning for outlaws and other deviants - castration by mechanical chompers, a lobotomy and a blond dye job, then sale as a soprano domestic slave.

Ice Pirates is the illegitimate child of Star Wars and Animal House. The jokes, both verbal and physical, range from the hackneyed to the truly brilliant - and most of both will have you rolling on the floor. It's a an hour-and-a-half of pure unadulterated fun. When I finally get the 6' x 8' screen for our light projector mounted, this will be one of the first movies we watch.

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

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