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Starship Troopers (1997)

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Humans in a fascist, militaristic future wage war with giant alien bugs in a satire of modern world politics.

Director:

Paul Verhoeven

Writers:

Edward Neumeier (screenplay) (as Ed Neumeier), Robert A. Heinlein (book)
Popularity
1,066 ( 21)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Casper Van Dien ... Johnny Rico
Dina Meyer ... Dizzy Flores
Denise Richards ... Carmen Ibanez
Jake Busey ... Ace Levy
Neil Patrick Harris ... Carl Jenkins
Clancy Brown ... Sgt. Zim
Seth Gilliam ... Sugar Watkins
Patrick Muldoon ... Zander Barcalow
Michael Ironside ... Jean Rasczak
Rue McClanahan ... Biology Teacher
Marshall Bell ... General Owen
Eric Bruskotter ... Breckinridge
Matt Levin ... Kitten Smith
Blake Lindsley ... Katrina
Anthony Ruivivar ... Shujimi
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Storyline

In the distant future high school kids are encouraged to become citizens by joining the military. What they don't know is that they'll soon be engaged in a full scale war against a planet of alien insects. The fight is on to ensure the safety of humanity. Written by Christopher Van Pelt

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In Every age there is a cause worth fighting for, but in the future the greatest threat to our survival will not be man at all. Now the youth of tomorrow must travel across the stars to face an enemy more devastating than any ever imagined. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic sci-fi violence and gore, and for some language and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bug Hunt at Outpost Nine See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$105,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,058,773, 9 November 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$54,814,377

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$121,214,377
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS (8 channels)| Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

In the movie Jonny Rico's and some of the other characters' nationalities have been significantly altered from the original novel. In Robert A. Heinlein's novel the story focuses on the first-person narrative of Juan "Jonnie" Rico, a son of a wealthy Filipino family who enlisted in to the Mobile Infantry--a highly futuristic military unit equipped with powered armor and an arsenal of advanced weaponry. In the movie, instead of an elite fighting force equipped with Powered Suits they are a conventional army armed with conventional weapons but apparently without armored vehicles, artillery, most heavy weapons and other vital equipment. The Powered Suits would not feature in the series until Starship Troopers 3: Marauder (2008). See more »

Goofs

Just after Rico and the guys rescue Carmen from the brain bug and the nuke is detonated, there is supposed to be a rock fall in the tunnel sealing the tunnel. The rocks falling can clearly be seen to be a one piece square 'door' being lowered into place. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Newsreel announcer: Young people from all over the globe are joining up to fight for the future.
Soldier #1: I'm doing my part.
Soldier #2: I'm doing my part.
Soldier #3: I'm doing my part.
Young kid dressed up as a soldier: I'm doing my part too.
[Soldiers laugh]
Newsreel announcer: They're doing their part. Are you? Join the Mobile Infantry and save the world. Service guarantees citizenship.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Australian Cable, VHS, DVD, and theatrical releases are uncut. The free-to-air TV version makes a few cuts in order to receive an 'M' rating so that the movie may be shown at an earlier 8:30pm time-slot. Nudity and language are intact, and the following scenes are cut for violence:
  • The decapitation/trench run at the beginning is cut by a few seconds. In the middle of the movie where the scene is replayed, it is still cut. The death of the cameraman is not shown and cuts to Rico shooting the bug still.
  • The 'knife' scene is cut. The knife is thrown, but it is not actually shown going into the hand, let alone Zim calling out Medic! when he pulls the knife out.
  • Shujumi's death is cut, the Bug doesn't carry him around before chucking him away.
  • One of the announcement breaks are cut, The one when the reports of Mormons settle on a military base, with the corpses being shown.
  • When the Radio Technician is picked up by a Flying Bug, the initial stinging of him is cut.
  • When Rasczak has his legs bitten off, the shot of Rico fully plays out over the gunshot wound to Rasczak, instead of cutting to the shot.
  • The three victims of the Tanker Bug are cut.
  • The showing of Farley with his brains gone is cut.
  • Numerous cuts occur on the attack on the military base.
  • Dizzy's death is cut, the initial 2 stabs are in, the next 2 stabs are cut and the pulling out of the claw is cut too, just Rico and Levy carry her back to the lifeboat.
  • A shot of Carmen wincing in pain after she gets stabbed by a Bug is cut
  • The scene where the brain bug sucks Zander's brains out is cut; it cuts away to a shot of Carmenafter the head is pierced.
See more »


Soundtracks

Intense
Written by Karen Poole, Terence Martin & Shelly Poole (as Michelle Poole)
Performed by Alisha's Attic
Courtesy of Mercury Records Limited
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Licensing
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Swiftian satire at its finest
8 October 2002 | by sergey_smirnowSee all my reviews

Let me start off with saying that I hate Heinlein. No, don't get me wrong, he's one of the best serious sci-fi writers of the 20-th century, along with Asimov, Stanislav Lem and Yefremov. But it is social and political aspect of his works that I just can't accept. It goes like some strange blend of Italian fascism, overwhelming racism and purely Kiplingian he-man romance. And Paul Verhauven does great job satirizing precisely this aspect of Heinlein's writing in his "Starship troopers".

Now, merely good satire is basically source material concept developed into absurd via its internal logic and laughed at. Truly great satire reconstructs the utopian world of writer's dream... just emphasizing some over-the-tops and inconsistencies. And it brings this world to rubbish to laugh at. It is always subtle and razor-sharp. That is why people often don't get it and despise "Starship Troopers" as a no-brainer actioner. It is far from that.

Enter the squeaky-clean fascist utopia. Everyone is mild-mannered and clean shaven, well-educated and white (living in Buenos-Aires, mind you). Big clean biology class, where all students must cut live bugs in halves to know what's inside (and for most part they like it). Your unfortunate exam results are readily available on the large screen for everybody to see, as well as your name in KIA list later. And don't forget to enlist - otherwise you can't vote and impress your girl. Kill big dangerous bugs - as an infantry trooper and with rifle fire only. Want to learn more - get a citizenship? Do you still want to live in such a society?

One of the best moments for me is when friends show our hero his KIA card through the regeneration-camera glass. They are all very happy indeed... and don't see anything wrong with it. While I'm getting shivers down my spine. It's really scary, they don't understand what IS wrong with it! And the downbeat ending, even if it doesn't look this way... joyful fascism goes strong! No bugs could defeat it! (and, you know, now you may enlist at an earlier age. Want to learn more?)

Summary: very good movie combining awesome CGI with profound satirical insight into technocratic fascist utopia.


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