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Lord of the Flies (1990)

R  |   |  Adventure, Drama, Thriller  |  16 March 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 21,299 users  
Reviews: 136 user | 35 critic

Stranded on an island, a group of schoolboys degenerate into savagery.



(novel) (as Sir William Golding) , (screenplay) (as Sara Schiff)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Simon (as Badgett Dale)
Andrew Taft ...
Edward Taft ...
Gary Rule ...
Terry Wells ...
Braden MacDonald ...
Angus Burgin ...
Martin Zentz ...
Brian Jacobs ...
Vincent Amabile ...
David Weinstein ...
Chuck Bell ...


After a plane crash in the ocean, a group of military students reach an island. Ralph organizes the boys, assigning responsibilities for each one. When the rebel Jack Merridew neglects the fire camp and they lose the chance to be seen by a helicopter, the group split under the leadership of Jack. While Ralph rationalizes the procedures, Jack returns to the primitivism, using the fear for the unknown (in a metaphor to the religion) to control the other boys, and hunting and chasing pigs, stealing the possession of Ralph's group and even killing people. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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What separates Man from Beast? Not Much! See more »


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Release Date:

16 March 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El señor de las moscas  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$13,985,225 (USA)

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Chris Furrh was in another movie this same year about a group of kids stranded alone on an island: Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color: Exile (1990). See more »


In the credits, one character is credited as "Marine Petty Officer." U.S. Marines do not have petty officers. See more »


Tony: What are we gonna do with thieves when we catch them?
Ralph: We can't have kids stealing and just running wild. We're going to have to have stricter rules and hand out demerits... I guess.
See more »


References The Muppet Show (1976) See more »

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User Reviews

Really a good movie
15 January 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

First of all, I never read the book. Both my older brother and sister read it in middle school, but somehow I missed it. I have been aware of the story for many years though. I am definitely going to go pick up the book now. Furthermore, can anything be more cliché than to pan a movie because it didn't live up to the book. Anyways, I had the luck of going into this movie without that bias.

I have read many other books that involve political analysis, such as George Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm. I find these kind of topics fascinating.

First of all, I disagree with the people that saw this movie and see it only as "boys go savage". It shows that reviewers simply don't understand the deeper level this movie goes to, which is why do people behaved "civilized" at all. How does a democracy survive? How do dictatorships happen? What is civilized? How do you make people cooperate?

I personally have been in situations, such as adult recreational sports, where I volunteered as a team captain. It's a perfect analogy to Lord Of the Flies, because a team captain has no real authority. I'm not paying people, and I can't kick people off the team, and there are real limits to anything I can do. Every time I have done that there is always some punk that decides he wants to take over, or doesn't have to do what he is told. This happens regardless of how minimally I am trying to dictate anything.

So, how do you prevent anarchy? How do you keep from being overthrown? Every society starts out like this. Sure, once someone gets in power there are many people that can't compete with them, but at the top of any hierarchy is competition and relationships. How is order created?

So, after I watched this movie I thought, what did Ralph do wrong?

Here is my answer. First of all, Ralph should have not created a complete democracy. Instead he should have created a council subgroup of kids that would be elected into their positions. He should have also been elected, and would have easily won in the beginning.

By tying the council members positions to his position, they would have supported him in case of any rebellion. True authority is cemented in affiliation. Also, if someone else wanted to take over they would have had a civilized means to do so, next election, and wouldn't have to resort to rebellion.

Also, anyone not doing their fair of work on the island would have to be judged before the council. This way his authority would have been enforced through a form of group discipline.

Many tribal societies function like this, despite the fact that some might judge them to be "uncivilized". In fact, this is also how modern democracy/representative governments work.

Jack on the other hand did just about everything right in building his brutal dictatorship. He built his own council out of boys that decided to rebel with him from the beginning. So, he already had his power base. He used fear of the monster to create a constant state of emergency to keep people from questioning his authority. He used violence to keep everyone in line, and he eventually attempted to kill off all his opposition.

Stories and movies like this are very important to keep us aware of the way we are manipulated by those who want power. By simplifying the situation they serve as a window to show us how our larger societies function.

If you learn anything from this movie at least learn to be suspicious of any political group that cultivates fear in you of outside forces. By making you afraid and convincing you that "we" are the ones that can protect you, they are using the oldest trick in the book.

11 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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