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Future War (1997)

Video  -  Action | Fantasy | Sci-Fi  -  28 January 1997 (USA)
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Ratings: 1.7/10 from 3,275 users  
Reviews: 115 user | 22 critic

A runaway human slave from Earth's future escapes to the present day.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Travis Brooks Stewart ...
Kazja ...
Ray Adash ...
Andre Scruggs ...
Fred Burroughs (as Andre Skruggs)
David Jacobs ...
Oscar (as Al Juliano)
Matthew Sakimoto ...
Art Cruz ...
Joanne Takahashi ...
Mary Shelton ...
Medical Examiner
Tracy Robertson ...
Tom Richards ...
Forrest J Ackerman ...
Park Victim


A race of evil cyborgs kidnap humans from Earth's future to use as slaves, and take dinosaurs from the past to use as trackers. One of their slaves, the Runaway, escapes and makes his way to present-day Los Angeles. There he must fend off the cyborgs and their trackers, the police, and the government, befriended by a prostitute-turned-nun who runs a halfway house. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

cyborg | dinosaur | tv news | nun | telephone | See more »


Past Predator, Present Alien, Future Terminator See more »


Unrated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

28 January 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Future War  »

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Did You Know?


The most recently released film to ever be featured on the TV series Mystery Science Theater 3000 (1988). See more »


At one point, Runaway throws a knife at a dinosaur, but in the very next shot, we see it drop from his hand. See more »


Fred: Personally, I think you're getting stupid about that kid who bought the farm.
See more »


References Carnosaur (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

REALLY! It's not that bad!
22 December 2003 | by (New Jersey) – See all my reviews

Well, what can I say. I'm an IMDb junkie, so one day when I was checking out the Bottom 100 list for some laughs, I came across Future War. After reading the line of a user comment, 'forced perspective dinosaurs', I embarked on a 20-minute laughing attack and had to find out more. So I went out and bought it somewhere for like 3 bucks, and pumped it into the DVD player, and prepared myself for the worst. I don't know where to begin. I really don't.

The opening credits-roll is truly scary. Five minutes worth of poorly-timed cuts between the cast of characters and tech team interspersed with recycled (and bad, might I add) space cruiser footage. I fast-forwarded through them after a minute - and this was during the first time seeing the film!

Scenes that go nowhere - like when the Runaway (Bernhardt) walks into a room and says, "They stay near water", referring to the dino-trackers, and the scene cuts frighteningly too soon. At times, the video quality is shattered by dark shadows that appear on top of the screen. Any sense of continuity is destroyed by poor editing and pacing.

The lead cyborg, Z'Dar, or somebody, is featured in the credits as 'Also starring", like his presence was tantamount to an A-list talent graciously appearing in an indie film. He's flat out the most corny cyborg I've ever seen. Future War tries to approach greatness with allegedly pulse-pounding fight sequences, but that, too, is ruined as the Runaway pummels a plastic T-Rex who's the size of a Snoopy doll. I give him credit, though, he really looks as if he's trying.

The "radioman" at the police station has no line-delivery ability. The SWAT guys look really nervous and ill-at-ease in front of the camera. A lack of the director's imagination killed off the black dude, who I was actually starting to like. He seems to have been killed in the first dino attack on the house early on, and is not referred to again until he materializes later on. He shows concern, fear, and genuine emotion when appropriate. Then he gets gobbled up by the damn tracker at the end!

Even someone who never saw Future War could critique on it. He/She would only have to say "This movie lacks vision, budget, coherency, and purpose." And they'd hit it right on the money! I did some investigating, and I discovered that most of the actors and actresses of this film-poop either did a few movies before or appeared in Future War for their first role. But that's not very revealing. What IS revealing is the fact that OVER HALF of them NEVER went on to do another movie! Check it out yourself! POOF! Their careers detonated by Future War!

However, I'd like to say some things in defense of Future War. I don't believe anyone involved was convinced that this movie would be anything but direct-to-video or the bargain rack. It wasn't meant to compete with other sci-fi films coming out. The actors and actresses DO appear to be having a good time, especially during the fight scenes with the dinosaurs. I thought it was kinda cute when Sister Ann (Travis B. Stewart) throws her jacket over the tracker-saurus' eyes, and the camera cuts to the dino, blinded, confused, and with a jacket draped over its head. Then POW! The Runaway slashes him to death as five cops, paralyzed with fear, watch on in awe.

FW featured a first-time director and an equally inexperienced cast, and I guess with a minimal budget, there wasn't much room for creativity. But I can imagine the cast and crew cracking up between scenes, going "HA ha ha! This film sucks! I'm moving to the East Coast after this! HA!" and generally having a good time. Consider that the IMDb Bottom 100 consists of quite a few major-budget movies with accomplished names attached, like Batman and Robin, Speed 2: Cruise Control, Gigli, Iron Eagle II, and The Cat In The Hat. Big-budget, big disappointment. FW did make an attempt to raise issues of loyalty, friendship, and morality. The end result wasn't spectacular, and with scrappy dialogue special (?? use the term lightly) effects, and continuity. My point is, big productions like the ones I mentioned deserve critical pounding because the studios have so much at their disposal and still can't pull off good reviews. Future War must have been fun to make and I'm sure everyone involved had a blast with their silly little movie.

A 7 out of 10 for a valiant, hopeless effort.

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