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The Running Man (1987) Poster

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Damon Killian: There are still two crack stalkers out there. Dynamo and Fireball. Who do you think will make the next kill?

Elderly Lady: Oh, boy. That's a tough one.

Damon Killian: Come on. You can do it. Who do you think?

Elderly Lady: Okay, I think the next kill will be made by... Ben Richards.

Damon Killian: Agnes, Richards is a runner. You gotta pick a stalker.

Elderly Lady: I can pick anyone I choose. And I choose... Ben Richards. That boy's one mean motherfucker.

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Ben Richards: Killian, here's your Subzero, now plain zero.

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Ben Richards: [after ripping the surveillance monitor off the wall] You cold-blooded bastard! I'll tell you what I think of it: I'll live to see you eat that contract, but I hope you leave enough room for my fist because I'm going to ram it into your stomach and break your god-damn spine!

[Smashes monitor on the floor]

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Amber Mendez: Me and my big mouth. We should have taken the trip to Hawaii.

Ben Richards: I had the shirt for it, but you fucked it up.

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Ben Richards: [to Killian] Hello cutie pie, one of us is in deep trouble.

[Sven enters]

Damon Killian: [laughs] Sven, do you wanna talk to Mr. Richards?

[long pause]

Damon Killian: Well?

Sven: I've got to score some steroids.

[Sven leaves]

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Damon Killian: You look pissed, Ben. Believe me, you got every right to be. But hey, will you just let me explain. This is television, that's all it is. It's nothing to do with people, it's to do with the ratings. For fifty years, we've told them what to eat, what to drink, what to wear... for Christ's sake, Ben, don't you understand? Americans love television. They wean their kids on it. Listen. They love game shows, they love wrestling, they love sports and violence. So what do we do? We give 'em *what they want*! We're number one, Ben, that's all that counts, believe me. I've been in the business thirty years.

Ben Richards: Well, I haven't been in show business as long as you have, Killian. But I'm a quick learner. So I'm going to give the audience what *I* think they want.

Damon Killian: [Ben shoves Killian into the rocket sled and the restraints automatically lock in place] You bastard. Drop dead!

Ben Richards: I don't do requests

[Ben launches the rocket sled into the game zone tunnel which later crashes into a billboard with Killian on it, exploding and killing him]

Ben Richards: Well that hit the spot

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Amber Mendez: I'm warning you, I get sick. Air sick, car sick. I'm gonna throw up all over you.

Richards: Go ahead. Won't show on this shirt.

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Ben Richards: Killian! I'll be back!

Damon Killian: Only in a rerun. GO!

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Ben Richards: Uplink, underground! Uplink, underground! If you guys don't shut up, I'm gonna uplink your ass, and you'll be underground!

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Amber Mendez: [after Richards cut Buzzsaw in half with a chain saw] What happened to Buzzsaw?

Ben Richards: Aw, he had to split.

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Dynamo: Thought it was pretty funny out there in the zone. What's the matter now, bitch? Why aren't you laughing?

Amber Mendez: Because there's nothing funny about a dickless moron with a battery up his ass.

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Ben Richards: [trying to get Dynamo's attention] Hey, Lighthead! Hey, Christmas Tree!

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[Referring to dead bodies]

Amber Mendez: They're running men. Last season's winners.

Fireball: No. Last season's losers.

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Damon Killian: Huh? I... I know a stalker died! Well, it had to happen sooner or later!

[pause]

Damon Killian: Look, it is a contact sport, right? Yes, but you see, you guys at Justice. You cannot have it both ways. You want ratings. You want people in front of the television instead of picket lines. Well, you're not gonna get that with re-runs of Gilligan's Island.

[pause]

Damon Killian: Gilligan's Island.

[hums the theme song]

Damon Killian: Yeah. Yeah, the one with the boat.

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Mic: Mr. Spock, you have the conn.

Underground Tech: Who's Mr. Spock?

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Agent: [Richards is signing a contract given to him by the agent] Here, here! Use my back, victim.

Ben Richards: [Richards signs the contract on the agent's back and then stabs him with the pen, yelling out a painful scream] Don't forget to send me a copy.

Agent: [Runs screaming in pain while trying to get the pen out of his back]

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Damon Killian: You bastard! Drop dead!

Ben Richards: I don't do requests.

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Amber Mendez: [seeing Fireball enter the game] Jesus Christ!

Ben Richards: [seeing Fireball discharge a burst from his flamethrower] Guess again!

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Damon Killian: Hi, cutie pie. You know one of us is in deep trouble. You know who I am?

Ben Richards: I've seen you before. You're the asshole on TV.

Damon Killian: That's funny. I was going to say the same thing about you.

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Ben Richards: I'm not into politics. I'm into survival.

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Ben Richards: Now I'm gonna untie you, and then you're gonna get dressed, and then you're gonna come with me.

Amber Mendez: Oh yeah? Why should I?

Ben Richards: Because I'm gonna say "please"...

[Arnold tears up the bench Amber is tied to from the floor it was bolted to]

Amber Mendez: Well, why didn't you say so?

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Ben Richards: [after strangling Sub-Zero with barbed wire] Yeah, he was a real pain in the neck.

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Amber Mendez: They think I'm your girlfriend.

Ben Richards: I can straighten that out. See that camera up there? I'll strangle you in front of the whole audience.

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Damon Killian: [after incriminating footage is shown on the studio screen] Ladies and gentlemen! Ladies and gentlemen! If you'll please bare with us, we're experiencing technical difficulties!

Elderly Lady: Bullshit!

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Agent: Mr. Richards, I'm your court-appointed theatrical agent.

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Ben Richards: I told Killian I'd be back. I wouldn't want to be a liar.

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Damon Killian: What's the matter? Steroids make you deaf?

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[Ben had just killed Subzero]

Ben Richards: [to Damon] Hey, Killian! Here's Subzero! Now... plain zero!

Damon Killian: [sadly] Ladies and Gentlemen, this is... just horrible. Words can't express what we're all feeling at this very moment. A great champion has fallen. We'll be back right after these important messages.

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Ben Richards: I'll be back!

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[after killing Damon Killian]

Ben Richards: Well, that hit the spot.

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Ben Richards: [to a trapped Dynamo] No. I won't kill a helpless human being. Not even sadistic scum... like you.

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Tony: The Justice Department's calling every ten minutes.

Damon Killian: Just give them an evasive answer. Tell them to go fuck themselves.

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William Laughlin: [his last words] Don't let us down. I don't want to be the only asshole in heaven, Ben.

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[Amber is being introduced to the audience as a special guest 'runner']

Phil Hiton: ...Later, she cheated on college exams. Had sexual relationships with two, sometimes three different men in a year. And then she met Mad Dog Ben Richards, her *Confederate*, her LOVER!

Amber Mendez: That was a lie!

Damon Killian: Dear, dear, dear. Let's reunite these little lovebirds! GO!

[audience cheers]

Damon Killian: [Amber is sent down to the game zone]

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Damon Killian: Brenda, if that ass hole is mopping the floor tomorrow, you'll be mopping it for the rest of the week. Let's go!

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Fireball: [Richards rips his fuel line] My gas line! My gas line! Go to commercial! Go to Commercial!

Ben Richards: [lights a flare] How about a light?

Fireball: [Fireball screams and then explodes]

Ben Richards: What a hothead.

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Buzzsaw: Richards, I love this saw. This saw's part of me and I'm going to make it part of you.

Ben Richards: [after a brief struggle Richards successfully positions the saw between Buzzsaw's legs] That's alright. Keep it!

[Richards begins slicing him through the crotch]

Ben Richards: [Buzzsaw screams in agonizing pain as people are watching with shock]

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[Damon Killian is talking to the operator on the telephone]

Damon Killian: Hello, this is Killian. Give me the Justice Department, Entertainment Division. No, no, hold that, Operator? Get me the President's agent.

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Ben Richards: Women. Can't live with 'em, can't live... with 'em.

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[Ben Richards finds a mortally-wounded Laughlin]

William Laughlin: I'm going somewhere, but not with you. Buzzsaw took care of my traveling arrangements.

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Damon Killian: I want a kiss, now, a big kiss, but remember... no tongues.

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Damon Killian: And that's why I'd like you to volunteer to appear on tomorrow night's episode of The Running Man.

Ben Richards: [beat] Fuck you!

Damon Killian: [chuckles] You're a brilliant conversationalist, Ben. A trifle limited, but brilliant.

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Damon Killian: Who loves you and who do you love?

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Amy: You're lucky he didn't kill you, too. Or rape you, then kill you. Or kill you, then rape you.

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Damon Killian: [after the introduction of Dynamo] Oh, thank you. You're beautiful. Well, it's been an exciting show so far, right? We've had shocks. We've had surprises. And we thought, why not one more surprise?

[Killian laughs]

Damon Killian: Will you please help me welcome our mystery contestant: Miss Amber Mendez!

[Amber is dragged onstage by Sven and his other two guards; audience applauds]

Amber Mendez: Let me go!

Damon Killian: Amber. Amber! Now I understand that you're single, Amber, and that you live on the West Side. And not surprisingly, she's flaunted the law and traditional morality all of her life.

Amber Mendez: Go ahead. Tell some lies about me now.

Damon Killian: We don't lie. Phil, tell us all about her.

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[last lines]

Phil Hiton: *The Running Man* has been brought to you by: Breakaway Paramilitary Uniforms, Ortopure Procreation Pill, and Cadre Cola; it hits the spot! Promotional considerations paid for by: Kelton Flame Throwers, Wainwright Electrical Launchers, and Hammond & Gage Chainsaws. Damon Killian's wardrobe by Chez Antoinne: 19th-Century craftsmanship for the 21st-Century man. Cadre Trooper and studio-guard side arms 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!

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Ben Richards: If you're not ready to act, give me a break and shut up!

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Stevie: Don't touch that dial!

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Damon Killian: We have one hell of a show for you tonight. Phil, please, if you will, introduce tonight's guest runner...

Damon Killian: [to Mrs. Agnes McArdle and the audience] ... and watch that screen.

[an CGI falsified version of the actual events of the Bakersfield massacre is shown; the police heilcopter is flying over the city]

Phil Hiton: Our star runner tonight needs no introduction. He's Ben Richards, the brutal slayer of 60 men, women, and children in the Bakersfield massacre.

Ben Richards: Food riot in progress. Approximately 1,500 civilians. Moving in.

Dispatcher: [to Richards] Yankee-nine-niner, the crowd is unarmed. Repeat, unarmed. Abort attack. Acknowledge, Yankee-Nine-Niner.

Ben Richards: [to dispatch] The hell with you.

Dispatcher: Lieutenant Sanders, take command. Detain Richards and return to base.

[Ben attacks Sanders and the crew; Thousands of shanty residents, the audience, and the guests in the locker room, including Captain Freedom, are watching the shocking events infolding]

Dispatcher: Acknowledge, Yankee-Nine-Niner! Acknowledge! Return to base! Those are innocent, unarmed people down there! Cease fire! CEASE FIRE!

[Ben starts shooting at the crowd with an automatic machine gun and laying waste to the entire city using rocket launchers; The audience and the residents watch in sheer horror]

Damon Killian: Well, we all know the aftermath: Grieving parents, orphaned children, and a nation shocked to its very core. Here he is, ready to pay the price for our home audience. In person, the Butcher of Bakersfield!

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Damon Killian: It's all part of life's rich pattern, Brenda, and you better fucking get used to it.

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Airport announcer: Flights to Tutuville and Mandelaburg are arriving on time...

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Damon Killian: [gets thrown into the turbo slide by Ben and the restraints lock in place] You bastard! Drop dead.

Ben Richards: I don't do requests.

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Damon Killian: Don't touch the hair!

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Ben Richards: It's showtime.

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Dispatcher: Proceed with plan alpha. Eliminate anything moving.

Ben Richards: I said the crowd is unarmed. There are a lot of women and children down there. All they want is food for God's sake!

Dispatcher: As you were, Richards. Proceed with plan alpha. All rioters must be eliminated.

Ben Richards: The hell with you. I will not fire on helpless people. Abort mission. We return back to base.

Dispatcher: Lieutenant Sanders, do you copy?

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Damon Killian: [Killian is explaining the rules of the game] Once inside the zone, the runners have three hours! They gotta go through all four game quads! Three hours or less and they're gonna need every second! Cause you know who's on their tail?

Audience members: The stalkers!

Damon Killian: Who?

Audience members: The stalkers!

Damon Killian: And you know what happens then!

Audience members: Anything goes!

Damon Killian: What?

Audience members: Anything goes!

Damon Killian: Right! Without further ado, it's time to start... RUNNING!

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[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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Harold Weiss: We can jam the network once we find the uplink to the satellite. Then we'll broadcast the truth.

Ben Richards: Truth? Hasn't been very popular lately.

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Richards: See you guys at the 10-year prison reunion.

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Damon Killian: They want ratings. l can get 10 points for his biceps alone.

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William Laughlin: Well, there's your ride. lt's all set.

Ben Richards: Nothing like first class.

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Mic: What is it?

Amber Mendez: It's the original video from the Bakersfield massacre, before they edited for broadcasting.

Ben Richards: Where did you hide that?

Amber Mendez: It's none of your business.

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Opening Narration: By 2017, the world economy has collapsed. Food, natural resources and oil are in short supply. A police state, divided into Paramilitary Zones, rules with an iron hand. Television is controlled by the state and a sadistic game show called "The Running Man" has become the most popular program in history. All art, music and communications are censored. No dissent is tolerated and yet a small resistance movement has managed to survive underground. When high-tech gladiators are not enough to suppress the people's yearning for freedom... more direct methods become necessary.

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Captain Freedom: [on the TV commercial] Are you ready for pain? Are you ready for suffering? lf the answer is yes, then you're ready for Captain Freedom's Workout.

Phil Hiton: Yes, it's America's own Captain Freedom, 10-time national champion, the greatest stalker to ever play the game. All right, now, all you runners, ready, get set, go!

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Dynamo: Come to me, my love.

[electrocutes Weiss]

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Amber Mendez: [Fireball arrives in the game zone by jetpack] Jesus Christ!

Ben Richards: Guess again.

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See also

Trivia | Goofs | Crazy Credits | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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