6.4/10
19,754
165 user 107 critic

Dark Star (1974)

Trailer
2:24 | Trailer

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In the far reaches of space, a small crew, 20 years into their solitary mission, find things beginning to go hilariously wrong.

Director:

John Carpenter

Writers:

John Carpenter (original story and screenplay), Dan O'Bannon (original story and screenplay)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Brian Narelle ... Lt. Doolittle
Cal Kuniholm ... Boiler
Dre Pahich ... Talby
Dan O'Bannon ... Pinback
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Storyline

Low-budget story of four astronauts in deep space, whose mission is to destroy unstable planets in star systems which are to be colonised. The late Commander Powell is stored in deep freeze, where he is still able to offer advice. As their mission nears completion, they must cope with a runaway alien which resembles a beach-ball, faulty computer systems, and a "smart bomb" who thinks it is God. Written by Alexander Lum <aj_lum@postoffice.utas.edu.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

alien | cult film | spoof | satire | parody | See All (79) »

Taglines:

Bombed out in space with a spaced-out bomb! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 February 1979 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Estrella oscura See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$60,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Original Version) | (Director's Cut) | (original student film)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The knife trick performed Boiler (Cal Kuniholm) is paid homage to years later in "Aliens" (1986) by Bishop (Lance Henriksen). Dark Star which was co-written and starred by Dan O'Bannon, who also wrote the story and screenplay for the original Alien (1979). See more »

Goofs

During the elevator sequence, which was actually shot horizontally in a corridor, you can occasionally see the plank on which Pinback was lying. See more »

Quotes

Doolittle: Bomb, this is Lt. Doolittle. You are *not* to detonate in the bomb bay. I repeat, you are NOT to detonate in the bomb bay!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Playboy posters in the crew quarters are not censored in some prints of this film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sunshine (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Benson Arizona
Music by John Carpenter
Lyrics by Bill Taylor
Vocals by John Yager (uncredited)
[Played over the opening and closing credits]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Cult classic
3 November 2003 | by Jay-KavanaughSee all my reviews

Well OK this may not the most enjoyable film I've seen but it is certainly one of the most unique and cynical films ever. I find myself pulling out the tape and watching it again every couple of years just to give myself a reality check with all the Hollywood tripe you get these days. To make the most of it you need to watch a couple of Star Trek episodes first and then watch this. Instead of the clean-cut, politically correct, join-the-dots films that are so common now, you get a feeling that this might just be the way life on a space ship would really be.

It was really way ahead of its time. People now comment that films like Star Wars and Alien were the first to make sci-fi more 'realistic' but Dark Star pre-dates both of them by several years. I have a sneaking suspicion that this is where Scott Ridley and George Lucas got some of their ideas.


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