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Starship Troopers (1997)

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Humans in a fascistic, militaristic future do battle with giant alien bugs in a fight for survival.



(screenplay) (as Ed Neumeier), (book)
1,047 ( 73)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:


In the distant future high school kids are encouraged to become citizens by joining the military. What they don't know is that they'll soon be engaged in a full scale war against a planet of alien insects. The fight is on to ensure the safety of humanity. Written by Christopher Van Pelt

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Since the dawn of his existence, Humankind has ruled the earth. But now the rules are about to change. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic sci-fi violence and gore, and for some language and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bug Hunt at Outpost Nine  »


Box Office


$105,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,058,773, 9 November 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| (8 channels)|



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Mark Wahlberg turned down the role of Johnny Rico. See more »


When Rico shows his tattoo after having liquor poured on it, the lower half is running down his arm. See more »


[first lines]
Newsreel announcer: Young people from all over the globe are joining up to fight for the future.
Soldier #1: I'm doing my part.
Soldier #2: I'm doing my part.
Soldier #3: I'm doing my part.
Young kid dressed up as a soldier: I'm doing my part too.
[Soldiers laugh]
Newsreel announcer: They're doing their part. Are you? Join the Mobile Infantry and save the world. Service guarantees citizenship.
See more »


Referenced in Die schlechtesten Filme aller Zeiten: Avengers Grimm (2017) See more »


Written by Daniel Decatur Emmett
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The negative buzz kept me from watching this film for awhile, but I'm glad I've seen it now!
22 January 2005 | by See all my reviews

Based on the famous Robert A. Heinlein novel, Starship Troopers is set in a world of the future where militarism is the norm, largely because we've discovered alien civilizations of huge insect-like creatures and we're at war with them. The film follows a quartet of high school friends as they make their varied ways through the military.

Starship Troopers is both a tongue-in-cheek satire of society and an intense sci-fi/action/war film filled with horror-like insect monsters and a healthy dose of graphic gore. That's a genre combination that will not please all viewers, especially if the tongue-in-cheek humor goes over their heads. For those more in tune with the genre melding, Starship Troopers promises a quick, edge-of-your-seat ride from the first moments to the last.

The film can be looked at in three sections, with slight crossovers from one section to another. The first is focused on the social satire. The cultural differences of the future are given in mostly indirectly, and occasionally, the point is what hasn't changed, or perhaps what is currently (per the film's setting) in vogue as a retro element. The second and third sections could be seen as a sci-fi Platoon (1986), with the second section focused on military basic training and the third focused on wartime. Like Platoon, the basic training scenes show order and a clear sense of purpose, while the wartime scenes show comparative chaos.

That the film could be compared to something like Platoon shows that although director Paul Verhoeven and screenwriter Edward Neumeier are aware that the material could easily be seen as absurd, they have the chops to make it believable and suspenseful at the same time.

This is not to say that Starship Troopers is a rip-off of any other movie. The film-making here is highly original, and we could almost see the entire film as a computer-based CNN-styled collection of wartime newsreels of the future. It remains quick, witty and intense throughout. My only regret is that they didn't incorporate Yes' song Starship Troopers in the score somehow.

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