Hysterical Californians prepare for a Japanese invasion in the days after Pearl Harbor.

Director:

Steven Spielberg

Writers:

Robert Zemeckis (screenplay), Bob Gale (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
3,987 ( 1,120)
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dan Aykroyd ... Sgt. Frank Tree
Ned Beatty ... Ward Douglas
John Belushi ... Capt. Wild Bill Kelso
Lorraine Gary ... Joan Douglas
Murray Hamilton ... Claude Crumn
Christopher Lee ... Capt. Wolfgang von Kleinschmidt
Tim Matheson ... Capt. Loomis Birkhead
Toshirô Mifune ... Cmdr. Akiro Mitamura (as Toshiro Mifune)
Warren Oates ... Col. 'Madman' Maddox
Robert Stack ... Maj. Gen. Joseph W. Stilwell
Treat Williams ... Cpl. Chuck 'Stretch' Sitarski
Nancy Allen ... Donna Stratton
Lucille Benson ... Gas Mama (Eloise) (as Lucille Bensen)
Jordan Cohen Jordan Cohen ... Macey Douglas (as Jordan Brian)
John Candy ... Pvt. Foley
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Storyline

Hysteria grips California in the wake of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. An assorted group of defenders attempt to make the coast defensible against an imagined Japanese invasion, in this big budget, big cast comedy. Members of a Japanese submarine crew scout out the madness, along with a Captain in Germany's Kreigsmarine (Navy). Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Paranoia meets pandemonium. See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Before this movie was released, Steven Spielberg appeared on a radio program with critic Pauline Kael. During a commercial break, Kael and Spielberg were discussing this movie, and Kael told him that he was not going to get off easy with the critics after the massive success, critically and commercially, of his last two movies, Jaws (1975) and Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977). Kael warned him that they were ready to attack him without mercy if the movie fell even slightly below expectations. Ironically, Kael would be one of the few critics to give this movie a positive review when it was released. See more »

Goofs

When Wally is dancing on the table, the real dancer's feet jump up as Wally jumps down. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Card: On December 7, 1941, the Naval Air Arm of the Imperial Japanese Fleet, in a surprise attack, struck the United States Naval Base at Pearl Harbor and hurtled an unsuspecting America into World War II.
Title Card: American citizens were stunned, shocked and outraged at this treacherous attack. On the West Coast, paranoia gripped the entire population as panic-stricken citizens were convinced that California was the next target of the Imperial Japanese Forces.
Title Card: Major General Joseph W. Stilwell, ...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

At the end of the closing credits: For Charlise Bryant. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Blu-ray edition released by Universal in 2015 has a few oddities compared to previous home video versions (likely restoration errors). At about 55 minutes in the long version, 40 in the theatrical version (start of chapter 7), a subtitle for "Hollywood Boulevard, 7:35 p.m." is seen far to the right of center instead of centered like all the others; and in the visual cast credits, Dub Taylor's name is shown in blue instead of white after the flash effect. See more »


Soundtracks

Over There
(uncredited)
Written by George M. Cohan
Performed by Slim Pickens
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User Reviews

Full of FUN!
9 May 1999 | by psychoniSee all my reviews

Why is it, in our society, that a movie's success is rated on monetary value?As with "Always", another Spielberg flop, I love "1941".It's a shame when a movie's success can be judged on box office revenue only.It's a great deal of fun, and it's what movies should be about, a chance to laugh,to smile, and if done correctly, a chance to leave our lives for a couple of hours."1941" may not be at the top of all time movie favorites, they're saving that space for the BIG money makers,But it belongs at top of true movie lovers lists everywhere!And to Stash,It's seems that "Close Encounters of a Third Kind"was another Spielberg Film, before "1941", that some might consider as BIG!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Japanese | German | Spanish

Release Date:

14 December 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Night the Japs Attacked See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,701,898, 16 December 1979

Gross USA:

$31,755,742

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$92,455,742
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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