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Blue Thunder (1983)

R | | Action, Crime, Drama | 13 May 1983 (USA)
Trailer
3:07 | Trailer
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:

Blue Thunder See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,258,149, 15 May 1983

Gross USA:

$42,313,354

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$42,313,354
See more on IMDbPro »

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

The control stick in the F-16 cockpit is identical to the one from the Viper starfighter cockpit in Battlestar Galactica (1978). See more »

Goofs

Frame is flip-flopped (reversed) during brief overhead shot, when second police car approaches drive-in theatre; traffic is shown keeping left, and the cruiser passes a light-colored vehicle on its right, but in the striped median. See more »

Quotes

Frank Murphy: Grab your ankles and kiss your ass goodbye Jafo. We're going down.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"For Warren Oates, with love for all the joy you gave us." See more »

Alternate Versions

When "Blue Thunder" was first released on video in Sweden, the scene where Kate drives to the the TV station with the videotape, involved a crazy stunt when she drives into a narrow alley and meets a police car that comes the other way. To avoid a disaster, Kate flips her car on its side, hits its roof on a wall and flips back again. In later video versions, the stunt is gone. We only see the car when it enters the alley and then we see her driving on the freeway with a strange damage on the roof. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Parker Lewis Can't Lose: Parker Lewis Must Lose (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme From Blue Thunder (Murphy's Law)
(uncredited)
Written by Arthur B. Rubinstein
Performed by Arthur B. Rubinstein, Cynthia Morrow, Brian Banks and Anthony Marinelli (as the Beepers)
Produced by Evan Pace
Associate Produced by Reno Romano
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Great 80's Action
12 December 2004 | by philshuhSee all my reviews

I was dying to see this when I was 13 but I was too young to get in at the pictures. I saw the trailer when I went to see Superman 3. I finally hired it on video and loved it. I think at the time, it was the look of the helicopter that I was drawn too. Big bulky and menacing. (The scene where we first see Blue Thunder with the sun rising behind it is sheer class.) I've got the DVD and always enjoy watching this film, I love Roy Scheider in most films he's in and he's excellent in this one. Also thought Daniel Stern was great as Murphy's observer. The series was quite cheezy but enjoyable in it's own way. Universal latched on to the super hi-tech helicopter theme as Airwolf followed soon afterwards. The helicopter in Airwolf was a Bell 222 whereas Blue Thunder was a converted Gazelle helicopter that was given a facelift to make it look bulky and menacing, a little bit like an Apache. Back to the movie. The plot is quite thin and there are a couple of scenes that are a bit far fetched but if you're looking for a film with good helicopter chase sequences in it, they don't come much better than this. Catch you later.


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