The Last Starfighter

USA | 1984 | 101 min | PG


A video-gaming boy, seemingly doomed to stay at his trailer park home all his life, finds himself recruited as a gunner for an alien defense force.

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Alex Rogan is going nowhere fast. After his application for a scholarship gets rejected, Alex can’t see a future for himself outside of the dusty trailer park he lives in with his parents and little brother Louis. Depressed and angry, Alex finds solace in winning the top score on the arcade game STARFIGHTER, when a mysterious figure claiming to be the game’s creator appears and offers Alex a spin in his luxury car. This is no ordinary car, but an interstellar spaceship: Alex has been unwittingly conscripted into a war between the far-off Rylan Star League and the evil Ko-Dan Empire, with an android Alex taking over his identity on Earth. Can Alex summon the courage to believe in himself and not only save the nearly defeated Star League, but also our own world? Released in 1984, THE LAST STARFIGHTER is notable in that it was one of the first movies to use computer-generated imagery (CGI) for its spaceships and battle scenes (previously CGI had only been used in graphics.) This early adoption of CGI when paired with the practical special effects of the period creates a surreal, Wizard of Oz meets Star Wars movie that charmed audiences when first released in 1984 and continues to be a cult classic today. –CRYSTAL MADORE

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Director: Nick Castle
Cast: Lance Guest, Robert Preston, Kay E. Kuter


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