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Blue Thunder (1983)

R | | Action, Crime, Drama | 13 May 1983 (USA)
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The cop test pilot for an experimental police helicopter learns the sinister implications of the new vehicle.

Director:

John Badham
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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A secret military drone program recruits a police officer for its pilot program. Inspired by the 1983 film, 'Blue Thunder'.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Roy Scheider ... Officer Frank Murphy
Warren Oates ... Capt. Jack Braddock
Candy Clark ... Kate
Daniel Stern ... Officer Richard Lymangood
Paul Roebling Paul Roebling ... Icelan
David Sheiner ... Fletcher
Joe Santos ... Montoya
Malcolm McDowell ... Col. F.E. Cochrane
Ed Bernard Ed Bernard ... Sgt. Short
Jason Bernard ... Mayor
Mario Machado ... Mario Machado
James Murtaugh ... Alf Hewitt
Pat McNamara Pat McNamara ... Matusek
Jack Murdock Jack Murdock ... Kress
Clifford A. Pellow Clifford A. Pellow ... Allen (as Clifford Pellow)
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Storyline

Blue Thunder is a specially modified helicopter. It is for police work, but is armed and designed to counter street insurgencies. Its makers want to show what it will do, but have to train Los Angeles Police pilot Frank Murphy to fly and use it in order to allow it to operate in the city. Murphy and the project pilot have differences going back to Vietnam. The conflict between them continues to heat up as Murphy begins to suspect that Blue Thunder is more than has been disclosed. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Flying the most lethal weapon ever made... The Blue Thunder Special. At his fingertips, an infrared camera that can see right through your bedroom walls. A microphone that can record your most intimate conversations. And a 20mm electric cannon with six barrels that can turn your neighborhood into a raging inferno. But he's not headed for a war-torn country. He'll be cruising the skies of America. And only one man can stop him from using it on you. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 May 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Relámpago azul See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

That Casio LCD watch with that "countdown" Murphy uses to "check his sanity" actually belongs to John Badham, the director. See more »

Goofs

When Murphy and Lymangood are called into Braddock's office after the assault on McNeely, Braddock refers to the nude gymnast as "that silly twit out there in Encino," but his lips appear to voice something else. (The line in the script is "Don't you think I've heard about that silly c**t out there in Encino?") See more »

Quotes

Col. F.E. Cochrane: Rather a near thing today huh, Murph. I heard your turbine failed or was it your flying?
Frank Murphy: Back off, asshole!
Col. F.E. Cochrane: Oh, what's this hear I threats? My what a change. We are acting brave nowadays. Are you threatning me, Murphy?
Frank Murphy: No. I'm telling you. Back off!
Col. F.E. Cochrane: Catch you later!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits are played over a still image of Murphy walking away from the wreckage of Blue Thunder. See more »

Alternate Versions

ABC edited 14 minutes from this film for its 1986 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Psych: Daredevils! (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme From Blue Thunder (Dance Version)
(uncredited)
Written by Arthur B. Rubinstein
Performed by Arthur B. Rubinstein, Cynthia Morrow, Brian Banks and Anthony Marinelli (as the Beepers)
Produced by Anthony Marinelli & Brian Banks
Arranged by Reno Romano, Anthony Marinelli, Brian Banks & Evan Pace
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Escapist and thrilling story about dazzling aerial pursuits among Los Angeles skyscrapers
16 August 2010 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

Tense and suspenseful aerial action film with an exciting final chase starred by superbly crafted high-tech helicopters and F16 on the L.A. skies among its big city skyscrapers . Frank Murphy (Roy Scheider) is a Vietnam vet and police pilot who forms a helicopter surveillance team along with his younger partner (Daniel Stern) , when they spontaneously catch a secret conversation . Booth of them discover the strange project Thor (Thunder Helicopter Offensive respond ) in which are implicated powerful authorities . Then they take to the skies against a nasty army colonel (Malcolm McDowell) who will defend his accomplices at whatever cost.

Gripping , original action movie that deal with Roy Scheider trying to find the means avoid a video disk to be taken by corrupt government agents . Acceptable thriller full of intrigue and tense, this is a fast-paced , stylized action-suspense film. The tension of this picture keeps snowballing as ever close for ending . Casting is frankly magnificent, Roy Scheider as tormented Vietnam vet , Malcolm MacDowell takes honors as a psychopath who attempts to turn the tables on the protagonist before he can inform the police. Plus, a good secondary cast, such as Daniel Stern , Candy Clark, Warren Oates , Joe Santos and usual baddie of the 80s Anthony James , among others . But the real star is ¨Blue Thunder ¨ a heavily armored prototype , an Apache helicopter-alike which is secretly being proved for use in a nefarious government conspiracy . The slick screenplay written by recently deceased Alien's Dan O'Bannon . Adequate musical score accompanying the action by Arthur B. Rubinstein and inventively photographed by classic cameraman John A. Alonzo . The motion picture is professionally directed by John Badham . He's a nice director who achieved his greatest success in the 80s . He directed several hits ( Saturday night fever , Short circuit, Blue thunder, Drop zone, War games,Skateout ) , though today making TV movies( Jack Bull, Floating away ) and television episodes ( Crossing Jordan, Psych, Las Vegas, Standoff , Heroes ). Blue Thunder was followed by a successful TV series also starred by the ultra-sophisticated helicopter with James Farentino and Dana Carvey.


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