6.7/10
133,020
257 user 154 critic

The Running Man (1987)

Trailer
1:54 | Trailer
A wrongly convicted man must try to survive a public execution gauntlet staged as a game show.

Writers:

Stephen King (novel) (as Richard Bachman), Steven E. de Souza (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,860 ( 1,004)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Commando (1985)
Action | Adventure | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A retired Special Forces colonel tries to save his daughter, who was abducted by his former subordinate.

Director: Mark L. Lester
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rae Dawn Chong, Dan Hedaya
Total Recall (1990)
Action | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

When a man goes for virtual vacation memories of the planet Mars, an unexpected and harrowing series of events forces him to go to the planet for real - or does he?

Director: Paul Verhoeven
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside
True Lies (1994)
Action | Comedy | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A fearless, globe-trotting, terrorist-battling secret agent has his life turned upside down when he discovers his wife might be having an affair with a used car salesman while terrorists smuggle nuclear war heads into the United States.

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold
Eraser (1996)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A Witness Protection specialist becomes suspicious of his co-workers when dealing with a case involving high-tech weapons.

Director: Chuck Russell
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Vanessa Williams, James Caan
Twins (1988)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A physically perfect but innocent man goes in search of his long-lost twin brother, who is short, a womanizer, and small-time crook.

Director: Ivan Reitman
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Danny DeVito, Kelly Preston
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A tough cop must pose as a kindergarten teacher in order to locate a dangerous criminal's ex-wife, who may hold the key to putting him behind bars.

Director: Ivan Reitman
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Penelope Ann Miller, Pamela Reed
Red Heat (1988)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A tough Russian policeman is forced to partner up with a cocky Chicago police detective when he is sent to Chicago to apprehend a Georgian drug lord who killed his partner and fled the country.

Director: Walter Hill
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Belushi, Peter Boyle
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

With the help of a magic ticket, a young movie fan is transported into the fictional world of his favorite action movie character.

Director: John McTiernan
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, F. Murray Abraham, Art Carney
Predator (1987)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A team of commandos on a mission in a Central American jungle find themselves hunted by an extraterrestrial warrior.

Director: John McTiernan
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Kevin Peter Hall
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young boy, Conan, becomes a slave after his parents are killed and tribe destroyed by a savage warlord and sorcerer, Thulsa Doom. When he grows up he becomes a fearless, invincible fighter. Set free, he plots revenge against Thulsa Doom.

Director: John Milius
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones, Max von Sydow
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Conan leads a ragtag group of adventurers on a quest for a princess.

Director: Richard Fleischer
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Grace Jones, Olivia d'Abo
End of Days (1999)
Action | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

At the end of the century, Satan visits New York in search of a bride. It's up to an ex-cop who now runs an elite security outfit to stop him.

Director: Peter Hyams
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Gabriel Byrne, Robin Tunney
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Arnold Schwarzenegger ... Ben Richards
Maria Conchita Alonso ... Amber Mendez
Yaphet Kotto ... William Laughlin
Jim Brown ... Fireball
Jesse Ventura ... Captain Freedom
Erland van Lidth ... Dynamo (as Erland Van Lidth)
Marvin J. McIntyre ... Harold Weiss
Gus Rethwisch ... Buzzsaw
Professor Toru Tanaka ... Subzero
Mick Fleetwood ... Mic
Dweezil Zappa ... Stevie
Richard Dawson ... Damon Killian
Karen Leigh Hopkins ... Brenda
Sven-Ole Thorsen ... Sven (as Sven Thorsen)
Edward Bunker ... Lenny (as Eddie Bunker)
Edit

Storyline

In the year 2017, the world economy has collapsed. The great freedoms of the United States are no longer, as the once great nation has sealed off its borders and become a militarized police state, censoring all film, art, literature, and communications. Even so, a small resistance force led by two revolutionaries manages to fight the oppression. With full control over the media, the government attempts to quell the nation's yearning for freedom by broadcasting a number of game shows on which convicted criminals fight for their lives. The most popular and sadistic of these programs is "The Running Man," hosted by Damon Killian. When a peaceful protest of starving citizens gathers in Bakersfield, California, a police officer named Ben Richards is ordered to fire on the crowd, which he refuses to do. Subdued by the other officers, the attack is carried out, and Richards is framed for the murder of almost a hundred unarmed civilians. Following a daring jail break months later, Richards is... Written by Curly Q. Link

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The year is 2019. The finest men in America don't run for President. They run for their lives. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 November 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Running Man See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,117,465, 15 November 1987

Gross USA:

$38,122,105

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$38,122,105
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

It was falsely rumored that in a alternate version of the movie that in the scene which Richards meets Killian, Richards says to Ben "Hello cutie pie! One of us is in deep s**t." Instead of "One of us in deep trouble." However, no footage of this exists. See more »

Goofs

During the battle with Buzzsaw and Dynamo the camera changes to the stalker locker room and shows Fireball sitting with a woman in silver and a woman in blue and Capt. Freedom in the background. Later in the scene it shows Capt. Freedom where Fireball was sitting with the two women. But the third time, it shows Fireball back with the two women and Capt. Freedom back in the same position in the background he was in the first shot. See more »

Quotes

Ben Richards: Killian! I'll be back!
Damon Killian: Only in a rerun. GO!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Announcer's voiceover: "The Running Man has been brought to you by: Breakaway Paramilitary Uniforms, Orthopure Pure Procreation Pills, and Cadre Cola - it hits the spot. Promotional considerations paid for by Kelton Flame Throwers, Wainwright Electrical Launchers, and Hammond & Gage Chain Saws. Damon Killian's wardrobe by Chez Antoine, 19th-century craftsmanship for the 21st-century man. Cadre trooper and studio guard's sidearms provided by Colchester, the pistol of patriots. Remember, tickets for the ICS studio tour are always available for class A citizens in good standing. If you'd like to be a contestant on The Running Man, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to ICS Talent Hunt, care of your local affiliate, and then go out and do something really despicable! I'm Phil Hilton. Good night and take care!" See more »

Alternate Versions

The German Video-version (FSK-16) is heavily cut (about 10 Minutes) to remove extreme violence. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Idiocracy (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

(Restless Heart) Running Away With You
Music and Lyrics by Harold Faltermeyer and John Parr
Performed by John Parr
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
I'm into survival not politics
11 December 2009 | by sol1218See all my reviews

**SPOILERS** Futuristic film about a totalitarian government that had taken over the US and uses the media to keep the public in line and satisfied with blood lust-like shows. The most popular being the brutal "Running Man" hosted by its giggling psycho host Damon Killian, Richard Dawson.

It's when Killian saw a news clip of former L.A cop Ben Richards, Arnold Schwartznegger, running from the police with his bulging muscles and perfect physique he saw his lagging ratings for his show-The Running Man-jump up at least 10 points. Richards had been framed for the notorious Bakersville Massacre where, during a food riot, some 60 civilians were gunned down by the L.A.P.D police helicopter that he commanded. With Richards now in custody he'll be the feature act in the next Running Man show where survive of the contestants, like Richards, is almost non-existent.

Getting away from all the preliminaries leading up to the main event the film really gets started when Richards is given the chance to save his life by withstanding and defeating all the stalkers on the show who are out to finish him off. Right away Richards sees what a lying lowlife swine Killian is by him having his two friends Laughlin & Weiss, Yaphet Kotto & Marvin J. McIntire, who escaped along with him from a government gulag put in the same position that he's in: Fighting for their lives against impossible odds as contestants on the show. That was something that Killian promise Richards he wouldn't do if he agreed to participate and go on the show.

With his new found girlfriend-whom he picked up along the way- Amber, Maria Alonso, Richards takes on the best and most effective stalkers that Killian could throw at him making mince meat fried chicken and Susi out of them. This doesn't save either Laughlin and Weiss who in the end are killed during the savage and brutal game.

***SPOILERS*** Richards who was only interested in his own survival turned his interest to overthrowing the ruthless and Nazi-like government when he saw first hand what they've been doing to him and his fellow Americans in enslaving them in both body as well as mind. With a new outlook on life and the sorry state that America is in Richards after dispatching the stalker squad that was out to kill both him and Amber turned his attention on Killian, who with his gang of goons no longer around to protect him, and gave him a taste of his own medicine!

P.S Even more effective then surviving the game of "Running Man" Richards with the help of his late friend Weiss, who was an electronic genius, was able the break the secret code that controls the broadcasts of the country's media-via satellite-outlets. By him doing that the American public were finally able to get the truth of how their Fascist Government lies to as well as manipulates them! And even more important they'll also be able, by rising up against it, to finally put a stop to it! One of those truths that comes to the surface is just how Richards himself was railroaded by the government in taking responsibility in the Bakersville Massacre. Which in fact as the original news video tapes showed, before they were altered, he tried to stop!


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 257 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed