6.4/10
19,300
161 user 106 critic

Dark Star (1974)

Trailer
2:24 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

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 »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An unlikely partnership between a Highway Patrol Officer, two criminals and a station secretary is formed to defend a defunct Los Angeles precinct office against a siege by a bloodthirsty street gang.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Austin Stoker, Darwin Joston, Laurie Zimmer
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A research team finds a mysterious cylinder in a deserted church. If opened, it could mean the end of the world.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Lisa Blount, Jameson Parker
The Fog (1980)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An unearthly fog rolls into a small coastal town exactly 100 years after a ship mysteriously sank in its waters.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Adrienne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh
Starman (1984)
Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An alien takes the form of a young widow's husband and asks her to drive him from Wisconsin to Arizona. The government tries to stop them.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Karen Allen, Charles Martin Smith
Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

After a freak accident, a yuppie turns invisible and runs from a treacherous CIA official, while trying to cope with his new life.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Chevy Chase, Daryl Hannah, Sam Neill
Someone's Watching Me! (TV Movie 1978)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A woman is being watched in her apartment by a stranger, who also calls and torments her. A cat-and-mouse game begins.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Lauren Hutton, David Birney, Adrienne Barbeau
Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An insurance investigator begins discovering that the impact a horror writer's books have on his fans is more than inspirational.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Sam Neill, Jürgen Prochnow, Julie Carmen
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A small town's women give birth to unfriendly alien children posing as humans.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Christopher Reeve, Kirstie Alley, Linda Kozlowski
They Live (1988)
Action | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A drifter discovers a pair of sunglasses that allow him to wake up to the fact that aliens have taken over the Earth.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Roddy Piper, Keith David, Meg Foster
Vampires (1998)
Action | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Recovering from an ambush that killed his entire team, a vengeful vampire slayer must retrieve an ancient Catholic relic that, should it be acquired by vampires, will allow them to walk in sunlight.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: James Woods, Daniel Baldwin, Sheryl Lee
Christine (1983)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A nerdish boy buys a strange car with an evil mind of its own and his nature starts to change to reflect it.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Keith Gordon, John Stockwell, Alexandra Paul
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In a future where all flora is extinct on Earth, an astronaut is given orders to destroy the last of Earth's botany, kept in a greenhouse aboard a spacecraft.

Director: Douglas Trumbull
Stars: Bruce Dern, Cliff Potts, Ron Rifkin
Edit

Cast

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

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

Taglines:

What would you be like after 20 years aboard DARK STAR the spaced-out spaceship. The ultimate cosmic comedy! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 February 1979 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Estrella oscura See more »

Edit

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 »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Talby's spacesuit chestplate is made from a muffin tray. See more »

Goofs

When Doolittle is talking to Bomb #20, the stars in the background change between shots. See more »

Quotes

Pinback: Er, Talby, he's drifting away from the ship without his jetpack.
Boiler: Can you dig that? I always knew that guy was weird.
See more »

Connections

Featured in First Works (1989) 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

See more »

User Reviews

 
One of my favourite films!
6 December 2004 | by NiceGuyTommySee all my reviews

John Carpenter's feature debut 'Dark Star' is an absolutely brilliant little curio, that'll make you laugh and laugh. I first saw the film on England's Channel 4 a few years back, and remember wondering what the hell I was watching. I quickly tracked down a copy and rewatched it to see if it was really THAT good...

The story involves a bunch of astronauts who have been in space for many years: they spend their time blowing up unstable planets and rocking out to surf music. During this time, an alien (that looks suspiciously like a beach ball) runs riot, and an unruly bomb threatens to blow everyone to smithereens.

'Alien' screenwriter Dan O'Bannon wrote 'Dark Star', and clearly borrowed from it for the 1979 Ridley Scott film - taking the hilarious beach-ball sequence and playing it out for tension rather than laughs. Also a big influence on the TV series 'Red Dwarf'.

Check it out if you're a fan of science fiction or a fan of John Carpenter. 10/10. An underrated classic.


89 of 110 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 161 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Comedy Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular comedy titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed