6.0/10
5,062
48 user 91 critic

Trancers (1984)

PG-13 | | Action, Sci-Fi | 22 May 1985 (USA)
A gruff bounty hunter travels back in time to 1980s Los Angeles to stop a twisted criminal who can transform people into zombie-like creatures.

Director:

Charles Band

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tim Thomerson ... Jack Deth
Helen Hunt ... Leena
Michael Stefani Michael Stefani ... Whistler / Detective Weisling
Art LaFleur ... McNulty (as Art La Fleur)
Telma Hopkins ... Engineer Raines
Richard Herd ... Chairman Spencer
Anne Seymour ... Chairman Ashe
Miguel Fernandes ... Officer Lopez (as Miguel Fernandez)
Biff Manard Biff Manard ... Hap Ashby
Peter Schrum ... Santa Claus (as Pete Schrum)
Barbara Perry ... Mrs. Santa Claus
Brad Logan Brad Logan ... Bull
Minnie Summers Lindsey ... 'Mom' (as Minnie Lindsay)
Richard Erdman ... Drunken Wise Man
Wiley Harker Wiley Harker ... Dapper Old Man
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Storyline

Jack Deth is a kind of cop/bounty hunter in the bleak Los Angeles of the future. He's become obssessed with chasing Whistler -- an evil criminal who uses powerful hypnotic powers to transform people into zombie-like creatures known as trancers. Whistler has managed to escape through time travel and is loose in 1980s L.A., but Deth is on his trail. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

2247 collides with 1985 . . . when a 23rd century crime fighter heats it up in L.A., today See more »

Genres:

Action | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Full Movie on Hulu

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 May 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Trancers See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$400,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Ultra Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The motorcycle scene marked the first time Helen Hunt had operated a motorcycle. See more »

Goofs

During the scooter chase. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jack Deth: Last January, I finally singed Martin Whistler out on one of the rim planets. Since then, I've been hunting down the last of his murdering cult. We call them "Trancers:" slaves to Whistler's psychic power. Not really alive, not dead enough. It's July now, and I'm tired. Real tired.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Echo Bridge DVD release features a trailer for Trancers 2 superimposed on the credits in the upper-middle of the screen as the credits roll. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Returner (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Deck the Halls
(uncredited)
Traditional tune, lyrics by Thomas Oliphant
See more »

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User Reviews

 
TRANCERS (Charles Band, 1985) ***
11 October 2007 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

This sci-fi entry comes across as a charmingly trashy amalgam of BLADE RUNNER (1982) and THE TERMINATOR (1984) – not as good as either, sure, but arguably more entertaining. It involves an unshaven, raincoat-clad police detective from the 23rd century (the film, in fact, was re-issued as FUTURE COP) chasing the leader of a group of Trancers (gullible "squibs" who turn vicious and expire fluorescently in a pile of ashes) back to the present day, where the latter intends to exterminate the ancestors of the three council members who brought about his downfall.

Except for a young Helen Hunt, I was unfamiliar with the main cast – though craggy-faced lead Tim Thomerson evokes the perfect blend of machismo, world-weariness and bewilderment the role requires. The film is also refreshingly tongue-in-cheek – with the funniest bits being the hard-boiled hero lighting a match against his own teeth and when, on entering a discotheque frequented by punk rockers, he deadpans "It looks like a room full of Trancers to me". As a matter of fact, the sharply-written script has a fair amount of amusing one-liners: when Thomerson complains about the implausibility of a name like Peter Gunn upon catching an episode of the vintage series on TV, Hunt quips, "What kind of a name is Jack Deth?" (i.e. the character played by Thomerson himself).

While the special effects afforded by the modest budget could best be described as quaint, the action sequences are adequate enough – including a couple in which the hero manages to halt time (via a James Bond-like gadget wrist-watch) in order to flee the presence of Trancers who have him cornered and, then, to save the heroine from certain death. Though perhaps too low-key for its own good and somewhat under-developed at 76 minutes, the film seems to be deserving of a cult reputation (for what it's worth, it was followed by two sequels also featuring Thomerson) – but, alas, hasn't been served at all well by the DVD format so far (this viewing came by way of the no-frills fullscreen R2 edition from a budget label). I, for one, wouldn't be averse to a more exhaustively packaged and properly framed re-issue...


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