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Short Circuit (1986)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Family, Sci-Fi  |  9 May 1986 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 40,748 users  
Reviews: 86 user | 34 critic

Number 5 of a group of experimental robots in a lab is electrocuted, suddenly becomes intelligent, and escapes.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Tim Blaney ...
Number 5 (voice)
Marvin J. McIntyre ...
John Garber ...
Penny Santon ...
Mrs. Cepeda
Vernon Weddle ...
General Washburne
Senator Mills
Tom Lawrence ...
Howard Marner's Aide
Fred Slyter ...
Billy Ray Sharkey ...


Number 5, one of a group of experimental military robots, undergoes a sudden transformation after being struck by lightning. He develops self-awareness, consciousness, and a fear of the reprogramming that awaits him back at the factory. With the help of a young woman, Number 5 tries to evade capture and convince his creator that he has truly become alive. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Something wonderful has happened... Number Five is alive! See more »


Comedy | Family | Sci-Fi


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

9 May 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cortocircuito  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$40,697,761 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The robots are designed very similar to the large fighting machines in the future battle scenes in The Terminator (1984). See more »


As Johnny 5 starts to fall off the waste disposal truck after leaving Nova there are lots of trees visible. But in the next shot, the truck is driving by a field. See more »


[when driving a campervan into a fish hung on a wire]
Number 5: Fish. Salmon. Sushi.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits are played out over a montage of scenes from the movie, including a pair of scenes that failed to make the final cut. One involves an encounter between Number 5 and a toy robot, the other involves a scene in a scrap yard where a scrapped car that Number 5 is currently sitting in is crushed. See more »


Featured in Atop the Fourth Wall: Athena #2 (2014) See more »


Come And Follow Me
(Number 5's Theme from "Short Circuit")
Written by David Shire, Will Jennings and Max Carl
Performed by Max Carl and Marcella Detroit (as Marcy Levy)
Courtesy of MCA Records, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"A wonderful film"
26 April 2004 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

This is a great comedy and family film. No. 5 is a cute, friendly and fun filled robot. After he becomes struck by lightning and runs away from the Nova, he is at first just a curious wonderer, until he runs into Stephanie's house. Stephanie is this young woman who loves animals and finds No. 5 to be this innocent looking robot who she takes into her house. No. 5 keeps saying "Malfunction.

Need input." So Stephanie lets No. 5 reed all her encyclopedias then lets him watch the T.V. all night.

After all the initial fun and "input" the chase begins when No. 5 realises that the people from Nova are after him and want to dismantle him. Because they think he's malfunctioning.

"No dismantle! Not malfunction. No. 5 is alive!" Are what No. 5 says. And N. 5 has to go through a number of obstacles to avoid being destroyed by these soldiers and a ruthless general who will do anything to permanently shut No. 5 down. But No. 5 is just too smart. He out smarts military men in many was, using all these tricks he has up his sleeves...or in his massive memory bank.

So overall if you have a heart then No. 5 is the perfect friend. He will truly capture your heart.

25 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

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