In a dystopian America, a falsely convicted policeman gets his shot at freedom when he must forcibly participate in a TV game show where convicts, runners, must battle killers for their freedom.

Writers:

Stephen King (novel) (as Richard Bachman), Steven E. de Souza (screenplay)
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Popularity
2,393 ( 9)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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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)
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Storyline

In the year 2019, 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:

2019. A game nobody survives. This year might be the exception. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John McTiernan intentionally kept Jesse Ventura out of any close up shots with Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator (1987) because of Venturas immense size (6'5, and almost 300lb) the director didn't want looking small which is evident during the fight scene in The Running Man (1987) when Ventura almost dwarfs Schwarzenegger. See more »

Goofs

When in the ice rink, Weiss is pushed along by Sub-Zero towards the camera. Just as Weiss almost hits the camera an arm reaches out from the left-hand side to catch him. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[a helicopter is flying at night]
Man: [over radio] Yankee-nine-niner, what are your coordinates?
Ben Richards: 0-2-0, flight level 1-5. We're above release point Echo-Bravo-one.
Man: [over radio] Move in and check it out.
Ben Richards: Roger. Moving in.
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Crazy Credits

Continue watching the credits and towards the end you will hear a running man commercial similar to what would play at the end of a game show. See more »

Alternate Versions

An edited version was produced for network TV broadcast in which extreme violence was removed, and certain dialogue was redubbed by the original actors (eg. an expletive Barbera Lux uses at the end of the movie was changed to "Bullsquat"). See more »


Soundtracks

(Restless Heart) Running Away with You
Music and Lyrics by Harold Faltermeyer and John Parr
Performed by John Parr
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User Reviews

 
Came up with a rather bizarre movie that differs greatly from the story it was taken from.
21 July 2005 | by Aaron1375See all my reviews

Arnold stars as a wrongly convicted federal criminal who escapes a futuristic prison. Once out he promptly is recaptured and put on a television show called the Running Man. A show where one must make his way through a labyrinth being pursued by trackers that include a chainsaw wielding maniac to a hockey playing sumo. It makes for an entertaining ride though it differs greatly from the Richard Bachman novel from which it came from (aka Stephen King). In that story there was no game show arena, rather you just went to the outside world trying to elude the trackers as best you could and the longer you kept hidden from them the more money your family got. Here it is different and look who is in it. With Arnold you need larger than life villains to go against him and also of note is Richard Dawson who is actually rather good as the host of the demented show. Let's face it though, he isn't exactly differing drastically from what he used to do all the time. So what do you get here? Lot's of action and wham bam finish and a little social commentary thrown in for good measure. You also get an entertaining movie that won't keep you on the edge of your seat, but will pass some time in a fun way.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 November 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Running Man See more »

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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
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Company Credits

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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
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