7.2/10
268,644
1,160 user 205 critic

Starship Troopers (1997)

Trailer
0:31 | Trailer
Humans in a fascist, militaristic future wage war with giant alien bugs.

Director:

Paul Verhoeven

Writers:

Edward Neumeier (screenplay) (as Ed Neumeier), Robert A. Heinlein (book)
Popularity
1,067 ( 75)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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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:

They Came to Our Planet, They destroyed our cities, But on November 7th, They'll learn, They messed, With the wrong species. 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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Ironside's character is missing and arm and later has both legs bitten off by a tanker bug. During a fight with Arnold Schwarzenegger in Total Recall (1990) (also directed by Paul Verhoeven) Ironside's character has both arms severed. See more »

Goofs

Starting at 1:03:10, a bug impales a trooper and starts tearing him apart. Several of the troopers behind him shoot the bug, but in some quick cuts from behind the troopers, they're shooting ABOVE the bug even though you can see bullets striking the bug, making it obvious they're shooting at a green screen. 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.
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Alternate Versions

A heavily cut version was shown on German TV in March 2001. This version was cut down to 89min. but still labeled as "not under 18" although almost every violent scene was cut out. For example the opening-battle at Klendathu was cut down to about 2 or 3 minutes. After the speech of the reporter you only saw the bug grapping the reporter and some soldiers firing some seconds before Rico is screaming into the camera. See more »

Connections

References Total Recall (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

I Have Not Been To Oxford Town
Written by David Bowie & Brian Eno
Produced by Terry Becker (as Terri Becker), Eric Colvin and Zoë Poledouris
Performed by Zoë Poledouris
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User Reviews

"War makes fascists of us all"
21 November 2014 | by rooprectSee all my reviews

My title is a quote from director Paul Veerhoven who makes no attempt to water down his political views in "Starship Troopers", a merciless, satirical skewering of those superpowers throughout history who believe war solves the world's problems.

That opening sentence is a mouthful, so let me explain a little further. In the director's commentary, Mr. Veerhoven makes no bones about naming the USA as the greatest offender. In an awkwardly funny moment, his co-commenter, screenwriter Edward Neumeier, mutters "Yeah but we did save your ass in World War II." To which Mr. Veerhoven clarifies, "But this is not about World War II, it's about what happened *after* World War II." And thus, the entire philosophy is explained in a way that patriots as well as pinko commies can understand. "Starship Troopers" is a cautionary tale about what happens when war ceases to be a necessary evil and instead becomes an unnecessary thrill. It begins with some hilariously obvious propaganda satires, all about joining the military (including a funny scene of a 12 year old kid in full battle attire). The rest of the movie is peppered with such dark comedic skits, a lot like Veerhoven's "Robocop" a decade earlier.

Where the film is brilliant (or disastrous, see below) is in the way the battle scenes do thrill us, almost to the point that we lose ourselves in the hysteria of warfare, and only upon sober reflection do we realize that Mr. Veerhoven has just proved how easy it is to become a mindless minion of violence. The disastrous part is that I'm afraid many audience members never sobered up and walked out of the theater thinking "Go war!" Such is the pitfall of making a satire; you run the risk of promoting the very thing you seek to ridicule.

Something very interesting that Veerhoven did was to use giant bugs as the enemy. I mean, who doesn't hate bugs?? Certainly no human I know. And that's the point: by presenting an enemy that's so universally hated as a bug, Veerhoven turns the magnifying glass on ourselves and challenges us to answer why we hate bugs, why we like to kill them so violently (crushed until their guts spew out) or gassed so that they die of painful asphyxiation before our eyes. If you caught the message of this film, you'll probably think twice about stomping that little spider who had the misfortune of being sighted in your presence.

Oh a final note that's a very nice touch. There's a scene in this film where a bunch of kids are stomping on cockroaches. You'll be pleased to know that the cockroaches were fake, and literally no animals were harmed in the making of this film. Touché, Mr. Veerhoven.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

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

Gross USA:

$54,814,377

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$121,214,377
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS (8 channels)| Dolby Digital | Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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