5.0/10
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53 user 62 critic

Red Scorpion (1988)

An elite Soviet Special Forces operative is chosen to assassinate a rebel leader, but instead he defects to lead the resistance against his former comrades.

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Writers:

(story by), (story by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lt. Nikolai Rachenko
...
Dewey Ferguson
...
Kallunda Kintash
...
General Vortek
...
Col. Zayas
Alex Colon ...
Mendez
...
Sgt. Krasnov
Ruben Nthodi ...
Ango Sundata
Vuzi Dibukwana ...
Guerilla Officer
James Mthoba ...
Guerilla Officer
Dinky Motsemme ...
Guerilla Officer
Ernest Ndlovu ...
Guerilla Guard / Guerilla
Thapelo Mofokeng ...
Guerilla (as Thapeld Mofokeng)
Mxolisi Hulana ...
Guerilla
Nicky Rebelo ...
Occupation Officer
Edit

Storyline

Hesitating in the moment he is about to kill the rebel leader, Nikolai fails and is captured. Rather than being killed outright, he is forced to undergo a shamanic initiation ritual. The ingestion of the poison of a local scorpion, and his initiation ceremony, including scarification (a scorpion), give him a new identity and role in the world -- the Red Scorpion. Written by Phillip Batz

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He's a human killing machine. Taught to stalk. Trained to kill. Programmed to destroy. He's played by their rules... Until now. See more »

Genres:

Action | Adventure

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

|

Release Date:

21 April 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escorpião Vermelho  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$4,192,440 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (cinema release)

Sound Mix:

(4 channels)| (France)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The filmmakers used a real bushmen tribe and Regopstaan was their 95 years old leader who only agreed to play in the movie if his tribe can follow him everywhere. See more »

Goofs

When Lt. Nikolai Rachenko is lifting the truck out of the ground in the final battle be props his gun up leaning on the truck. As he lifts, you can notice the gun sliding off; and in the next shot, its back standing up. See more »

Quotes

[after escaping from torture, he turns towards the woman taking notes]
Lt. Nikolai: Take a memo to General Vortek.
[She gulps and nods]
Lt. Nikolai: Subject: Escape. Message: I am *still* Spetsnaz!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Sound effects of various weapons firing and exploding are heard over the Little Richard song the plays during the closing credits. See more »

Connections

Followed by Red Scorpion 2 (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Uyandibiza
Performed by Amampondo
Words & Music by Mzoxolo Plaktjles
Courtesy of Claremont Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Have you ever seen a bushman?
19 January 2005 | by (Stockholm, Sweden) – See all my reviews

If there is something I connect to the 80's more than anything it's movies like this one. It came at the shivering end of the decade, when the cold war was nearly over. But it shows a technique honed through literally dozens of cold war action movies. A genre of it's own.

The Russian KGB-agent Nikolai (Dolph Lundgren) is sent to Africa to kill a native revolutionary. However he is betrayed by his own people and instead befriends the man he was to kill. Soon he exacts his vengeance on his deceitful commanders.

Dolph Lundgren is known from cold war epics like Rocky IV and Pentathlon. It seems his blonde Swedish looks are very Russian in the eyes of the American audience. Also his garbled accent might be appropriate as a substitute for real Russian. Here he shoots, explodes and slices half the Russian and Cuban armies in his quest for vengeance on the men who betrayed him. The machine of the communist party just needed one small deceit to see the error of his ways and instantly team up with natives and guerrillas to fight for their freedom.

A touching story if you don't think about it. So, you've seen Rambo II and III? You've seen Missing in action with Chuck Norris? You've seen dozens of other cold war action movies where Russians are killed in the hundreds and the hero hardly flinches when he is shot? Then you KNOW what this is about. And this might just be the best of the lot. This is simply 80's propaganda-action in it's most purified form. Entertaining to say the least. Rating is 1/10 for quality, 7/10 for entertainment and 10/10 for accents.


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