7.1/10
84,003
169 user 78 critic

WarGames (1983)

PG | | Sci-Fi, Thriller | 3 June 1983 (USA)
A young man finds a back door into a military central computer in which reality is confused with game-playing, possibly starting World War III.

Director:

John Badham
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Popularity
2,009 ( 69)

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matthew Broderick ... David
Dabney Coleman ... McKittrick
John Wood ... Falken
Ally Sheedy ... Jennifer
Barry Corbin ... General Beringer
Juanin Clay ... Pat Healy
Kent Williams ... Cabot
Dennis Lipscomb ... Watson
Joe Dorsey ... Conley
Irving Metzman Irving Metzman ... Richter
Michael Ensign ... Beringer's Aide
William Bogert ... Mr. Lightman
Susan Davis Susan Davis ... Mrs. Lightman
James Tolkan ... Wigan
David Clover David Clover ... Stockman
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Storyline

A young computer whiz kid accidentally connects into a top secret super-computer which has complete control over the U.S. nuclear arsenal. It challenges him to a game between America and Russia, and he innocently starts the countdown to World War 3. Can he convince the computer he wanted to play a game and not the real thing ? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The only winning move is not to play. See more »

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 June 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

War Games See more »

Filming Locations:

Culver City, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,227,804, 5 June 1983, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$79,568,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The producers designed the offices with glass windows to show off the expensive command center set. See more »

Goofs

When David is first brought to NORAD, McKittrick asks him who he is going to Paris with. Presumably, they knew about the Paris reservation from the printouts found in the Lightman's trash however, David used Jennifer's name to make the reservation so McKittrick would already know the answer. See more »

Quotes

[They are in NORAD, watching the computer WOPR playing Tic-Tac-Toe and Global Thermonuclear War at the same time]
Jennifer: What is it doing?
David Lightman: It's learning.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the premiere telecast version of the film, in the scene where the female airmen is counting down to Impact, there is more background music that plays than in the theatrical version and home video releases containing English language versions. However, the extra background music plays in foreign versions of the movie. Also, the extra BGM has not played in subsequent TV airings since that first telecast, as far as I am aware. See more »

Connections

References The Howdy Doody Show (1947) See more »

Soundtracks

Edge Of The World
Performed by Yvonne Elliman
Music by Arthur B. Rubinstein
Lyrics by Cynthia Morrow
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Still packs a punch
20 October 2009 | by imdb-9163See all my reviews

Watching this movie 25 years on, it still works. Obviously the onward march of technology has rendered several of the central plot devices redundant (although, to be honest, most modern techno-thriller entries are far less plausible) but the sheer tension of the story grabs you almost from the off and never lets go - there aren't many genre movies that got an Oscar-nomination for screenplay, which amply demonstrates its quality.

And the last ten minutes or so are still jaw-dropping. That spectacular (if implausible) NORAD set is as astounding as ever, and the last line still deserves it's place in the pantheon.

Laugh at the antiquated tech by all means, but be impressed by the effort taken to make it feel believable (cf. the sequence where Broderick's character gets the password for the school computer.) Hacker movies have rarely come this close to being real - and, as someone who had been there and done that at about that time, it was scarily right.

In no way is this one of the greatest movies ever made. But there's no question that it achieves the rare quality of transcending it's genre.


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