MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 30 this week

They Live (1988)

7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 57,657 users   Metascore: 52/100
Reviews: 306 user | 144 critic | 10 from Metacritic.com

A drifter discovers a pair of sunglasses that allow him to wake up to the fact that aliens have taken over the Earth.

Director:

Writers:

(short story "Eight O'Clock in the Morning"), (screenplay)
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Top 10 TV Shows

Brooke Anderson from "Entertainment Tonight" and Melanie McFarland take a look at the Top 10 TV Shows of 2014 in our new series "IMDb Countdown".

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 48 titles
created 24 Dec 2011
 
a list of 38 titles
created 07 Oct 2012
 
a list of 33 titles
created 25 Apr 2013
 
a list of 24 titles
created 01 Sep 2013
 
a list of 25 titles
created 10 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "They Live" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: They Live (1988)

They Live (1988) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of They Live.

User Polls

3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In 1997, when the US President crashes into Manhattan, now a giant max. security prison, a convicted bank robber is sent in for a rescue.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgnine
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A research team finds a mysterious cylinder in a deserted church. If opened, it could mean the end of the world.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Lisa Blount, Jameson Parker
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Snake Plissken is once again called in by the United States government to recover a potential doomsday device from Los Angeles, now an autonomous island where undesirables are deported.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Kurt Russell, Steve Buscemi, Stacy Keach
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The lone inhabitants of an abandoned police station are under attack by the overwhelming numbers of a seemingly unstoppable street gang.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Austin Stoker, Darwin Joston, Laurie Zimmer
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An All-American trucker gets dragged into a centuries-old mystical battle in Chinatown.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Kurt Russell, Kim Cattrall, Dennis Dun
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An insurance investigator begins discovering that the impact a horror writer's books have on his fans is more than inspirational.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Sam Neill, Jürgen Prochnow, Julie Carmen
The Fog (1980)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A Northern California fishing town, built 100 years ago over an ancient leper colony, becomes shrouded by a killer fog containing zombie-like ghosts seeking revenge for their deaths.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Adrienne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh
Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

After a freak accident, an invisible yuppie runs for his life from a treacherous CIA official while trying to cope with his new life.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Chevy Chase, Daryl Hannah, Sam Neill
Starman (1984)
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An alien takes the form of a young widow's husband and asks her to drive him from Wisconsin to Arizona. The government tries to stop them.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Karen Allen, Charles Martin Smith
Vampires (1998)
Action | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A vengeful vampire slayer must retrieve an ancient Catholic relic that, should it be acquired by vampires, will allow them to endure sunlight.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: James Woods, Daniel Baldwin, Sheryl Lee
Christine (1983)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A nerdish boy buys a strange car with an evil mind of its own and his nature starts to change to reflect it.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Keith Gordon, John Stockwell, Alexandra Paul
Action | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

Years in the future, a Martian police unit is sent to pick up a highly dangerous criminal at a remote mining post. Upon arrival, the cops find that the post has become a charnel house.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Natasha Henstridge, Ice Cube, Pam Grier
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Holly
...
...
Raymond St. Jacques ...
Jason Robards III ...
John Lawrence ...
Susan Barnes ...
...
Wendy Brainard ...
Lucille Meredith ...
Susan Blanchard ...
...
Dana Bratton ...
Edit

Storyline

Nada, a down-on-his-luck construction worker, discovers a pair of special sunglasses. Wearing them, he is able to see the world as it really is: people being bombarded by media and government with messages like "Stay Asleep", "No Imagination", "Submit to Authority". Even scarier is that he is able to see that some usually normal-looking people are in fact ugly aliens in charge of the massive campaign to keep humans subdued. Written by Melissa Portell <mportell@s-cwis.unomaha.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass...and I'm all out of bubblegum." See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 November 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

John Carpenter's They Live  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$13,008,928 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Graffiti artist Shepard Fairey got his "obey" name from this film. See more »

Goofs

When Nada is first hit and pushed through Holly's window, the TV is turned in slightly and blocks a part of the window, but in the next shot from inside of the home, the TV is now square with the wall and is out of the way of the window. See more »

Quotes

Nada: You know, you look like your head fell in the cheese dip back in 1957.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Special Collector's Edition: Masters del universo (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Down by the Riverside
(uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Highly Underrated
14 January 2005 | by (MS Gulf Coast) – See all my reviews

I have to say something here. This movie is actually very good. It was a mixture of sci-fi and political and sociological imagery. I thought the fact that the turncoat working with the aliens that were brainwashing the public was employed in the media was a brilliant way of showing how the media moguls consider us to be sheeple and use their power to persuade any way they see fit. This movie was actually quite well down, considering it did not have a blockbuster budget.

I would rather watch this than waste my time on the Matrix, which I think is a complete waste of time. The main plot of the movie was Nada discovering a worldwide conspiracy that used subliminal messages to "herd the sheep". Is this not a metaphor of what we see ever day? The media, commercials, billboards, etc, use subliminal messaging to encourage the actions of the public at large.

John Carpenter did a wonderful job. Roddy Piper's acting abilities were definitely above average, which is a lot more that I will ever to be able to say about anything Keanu Reeves has ever done. As usual, Keith David turned in a great performance. The reason this a cult classic is because it is a very good movie that requires the watcher to think.


172 of 233 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why wasn't Kurt the star of this? jtf1986
They Live in Prince of Darkness Universe? JGDragov
Keith David's comments about They Live Treeman222
The Ending parxig
MSNBC interrupts Congresswoman for report on Justin Bieber gtdlkerr-1
Sure fire signs that you're an Alien lenlarga
Discuss They Live (1988) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?