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Thunderbirds (2004)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure, Comedy  |  30 July 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.2/10 from 10,597 users   Metascore: 36/100
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When The Hood finds and invades International Rescue's secret base and traps most of the Tracy family, only young Alan Tracy and his friends can save the day.



(television series), (television series), 4 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Debora Weston ...
Lou Hirsch ...
Alex Barringer ...
Excited Kid
News Anchor
Lisa Lowe
Kyle Herbert ...
Know It All Kid
Dominic Colenso ...
Ben Torgersen ...


The year is 2010. Teenager Alan Tracy, sent off to a distant boarding school, is the youngest of the sons of Jeff Tracy, a retired American astronaut. Jeff, a widower, has formed International Rescue, and raised his sons to act as a secret, volunteer organization which uses highly advanced technology to save lives worldwide. Jeff and his older sons John, Virgil, Scott, and Gordon, who like Alan were named after the Mercury Seven astronauts are joined in this effort by Lady Penelope and her butler/chauffeur Parker. Their futuristic hardware is largely developed by a genius scientist known as Brains, who lives at the International Rescue base on Tracy Island, somewhere in the Pacific. Written by Anthony Pereyra {}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Climb into the drivers seat of the most advanced rescue vehicles on the planet See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for intense action sequences and language | See all certifications »


Official Sites:



| |


Release Date:

30 July 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Thunderbirds  »

Box Office


$57,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,350,974 (UK) (23 July 2004)


$310,277 (Australia) (10 September 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Hover Bike used by Alan to tow Tin-Tin and Fermat is modeled on the same equipment used by the Tracy brothers in episodes such as "City Of Fire" and "Attack Of The Alligators!" from the original series. See more »


When Lady Penelope is in TB1 she is wearing a pink jumpsuit, long hair and a pink hands-free device. The next scene in the bank she has changed her clothes and her hair is in a bun See more »


[first lines]
News Anchor: From a secret island in the South Pacific, the courageous Tracy family run an organization called International Rescue. When disaster strikes anywhere in the world, they are always first on the scene. They go by the name they gave they're incredible machines. The Thunderbirds. 5 - 4 - 3 - 2 - 1 - Thunderbirds are GO!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are animated (cartoon style) with the 4 Thunderbird Rescue Craft "saving"/manipulating the text which is in danger of being destroyed by disasters (Volcano Lava, Meteors, etc.). For those who have never seen the original TV Shows, it offers a peek at the design of the Craft and how they function at the disaster sites. A jazzed-up/updated version of the TV Theme Music is used for this sequence. See more »


References Star Trek: First Contact (1996) See more »


Thunderbirds are Go!
(Original TV Series Theme)
(Barry Gray)
Arrangement by Ramin Djawadi & Hans Zimmer
Courtesy of Universal Pictures Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A very poor reworking of a classic, aimed at the pre-teens
8 August 2004 | by (Swanscombe, Kent, England) – See all my reviews

The basic formula for the original series was; take someone, get the audience to like them, then put them into Mortal danger. This formula worked for the 32 episodes made between 1964-68.

Now, we jump forward 40 years to 2004.. We are introduced to Alan Tracy, a somewhat less-than-diligent college school kid, with his friend, Fermat, a young know-it-all. They are whisked off by Lady Penelope in her pink Ford Thunderbird to the island paradise where the Tracy Family live, for the school holidays. Almost immediately, they are left in the care of Kyrano and his daughter, Tin-Tin whilst the adults go to rescue John from Thunderbird 5 which has been damaged by a staged accident. This is all part of The Hood's scheme to take over Tracy Island so that he can steal the Thunderbird machines ...

…To rob a bank!

Yes. The plot IS as limp as that!

The dialogue is banal, the acting more wooden than that of the (fibreglass) puppets, the effects, anything but special and Hans Zimmer's score…? What little there was of Barry Gray's glorious theme shone through Zimmer's lackluster orchestration. The rest of the score was eminently forgettable. In fact, part of the score was broadcast the following week on the radio and didn't recognise it! I didn't even bother to stay to witness Busted's mediocre efforts with the end titles

To be fair, Ron Cook worked quite well as Parker, he and Sophia Myles as Penelope seemed wasted. With the right material, they could have been show stoppers. The CGI work was what I would have called leading edge - 5 years ago.

The Dynamics of the main craft were just wrong; The original series models at least moved as if they had mass

Another sore point is that the whole production seemed to be one long set of product placements, from every vehicle being built by Ford to the entire content of the Tracy Freezer being produced by Ben & Jerry's.

My son (9) enjoyed the film but this cross between Spy Kids and 'Clockstoppers', aimed squarely at his age group, added nothing to the Thunderbirds legend. When Star Trek hit the big screen in 1979 with 'The Motion Picture', a whole new lease of life was breathed into the franchise which then continued for another 20 years or so. With this film, Frakes has missed a golden opportunity to do the same with the Thunderbirds franchise.

I predict that this film, like 'The Avengers' and 'the Saint' before it, will sink into obscurity within 6 months, leaving the original series to its 'classic' status.

35 of 46 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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