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THX 1138 (1971)

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In the twenty-fifth century, a time when people have designations instead of names, a man, THX 1138, and a woman, LUH 3417, rebel against their rigidly controlled society.

Director:

George Lucas

Writers:

George Lucas (story by), George Lucas (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
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4,770 ( 98)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Duvall ... THX
Donald Pleasence ... SEN
Don Pedro Colley ... SRT
Maggie McOmie ... LUH
Ian Wolfe ... PTO
Marshall Efron ... TWA
Sid Haig ... NCH
John Pearce John Pearce ... DWY
Irene Cagen Irene Cagen ... IMM (as Irene Forrest)
Gary Alan Marsh Gary Alan Marsh ... CAM
John Seaton John Seaton ... OUE
Eugene I. Stillman Eugene I. Stillman ... JOT
Jack Walsh Jack Walsh ... TRG (as Raymond J. Walsh)
Mark Lawhead Mark Lawhead ... Shell Dweller
Robert Feero ... Chrome Robot
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Storyline

It's sometime in the future in a state controlled society, where conformity and homogeneity are the rule. What is also the rule is that the populace follows the wants of the faceless state without question. How this is achieved is through a mandatory drug regimen, which also suppresses human desire, with sexual intercourse and human relationships banned. The law of the state is policed by a force of robocops. The physical environment is totally within a manufactured enclosure, what being outside of this unknown. THX 1138 is a loyal subject, he who goes about his business as a skilled factory working building robocops. And even when he begins to have strange feelings, he does what is obliged by going to the state run confessional, which further brainwashes through its reinforced mantra of happiness, loyalty and understanding. THX 1138 is given a glimpse into the other side through his computer matched and thus appointed female roommate, LUH 3417, and her surveillance colleague SEN 5241... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Future is here. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 March 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

THX-1138 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$777,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,437,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) | (1971 Studio Theatrical Cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Lucas insisted on casting James Wheaton over Orson Welles to play the voice of "OMM" in this film. See more »

Goofs

During the car chase, the number 5 on a radio announcer's hat is backwards, revealing the usage of a mirror image. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Male voice (medicine cabinet): What's wrong?
THX 1138: Nothing. Nothing really. I just feel that I need something stronger.
Male voice (medicine cabinet): If you have a problem, don't hesitate to ask for assistance.
THX 1138: Yes, thank you, I'll be alright.
Male voice (medicine cabinet): Call 3485...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Credits roll down instead of up. See more »

Alternate Versions

The 2004 "George Lucas Director's Cut" contains several updated and CGI- expanded sequences:
  • The mosaic at the beginning of the film has been color treated and looks more like a bank of monitors.
  • The droid factory at the start of the film has been greatly expanded with CGI and we see much more detail of the creation of droids.
  • Many shots of the "city" have been greatly expanded with much more detail.
  • Several corridors in the film have been extended with more people.
  • The "Mind Lock" sequence has been updated and now has much more shots of the droids being created and new eye effects on Robert Duvall.
  • There is a never-before-seen shot of the police station.
  • The train scenes at the end have been expanded with more special effects.
  • The car chase scene is longer and more intense, with more CGI.
  • THX is attacked by new CGI shell dwellers at the end on his way out.
See more »


Soundtracks

St. Matthew Passion
Written by Johann Sebastian Bach
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
George Lucas presents a grim Kubrick-style vision of the future - "Star Wars" fans will be surprised!
12 February 2005 | by MovieAddict2016See all my reviews

This is simply a solid, well-made film, produced on a low budget and directed by George Lucas based on his early student film of (roughly) the same title. (Which is included on the Director's Cut edition of the DVD.) Fans of "A Clockwork Orange," "1984," "Brazil," and similar films about oppressive bureaucracies will love this. It's a grim and gritty vision of the future in which people are controlled and monitored (think Big Brother on a large scale). Robert Duvall (THX 1138 being his "assigned name") breaks the laws of the world by falling in love, engaging in sex and therefore rebelling, placing him and his love in danger.

This is a very clear moral story and allusion to politics and so on and so forth. It excels as both story and study. Duvall gives a good performance (his breakthrough role in "The Godfather" would come next year) but the real surprise here is Lucas, who goes for a Kubrick-like edge to his film that really separates it from his later work. You won't believe this is from the guy who created Jar-Jar Binks.

If anyone accuses George Lucas of being the schmaltzy sell-out he has now become, direct them to this film in order to prove that, at one point in his life, he really did have a bleak outlook on life and the future, and it didn't start with the words "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...".


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