Screamers (1996) - Rotten Tomatoes

Screamers (1996)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This action-packed sci-fi thriller is set upon the planet Sirius 6B in the year 2078. The planet has been decimated by a vast nuclear war. Many have survived, but their continued survival is threatened by the dreaded screamers, strange shape-changing mechanical creatures who use razor sharp knives to hack up any life-form in their way. They earned their name because when they kill, they make a horrible high pitched sound. The first screamer makes its appearance as a lone soldier approaches a bunker. He has come to deliver an important message from the NEB to its enemy the Alliance. Unfortunately, the low flying screamer gets to the soldier first, and quicker than Popeil's Vegamatic, slices and dices the fellow into tiny pieces. Later a jet crashes near the bunker. Aboard it is a nuclear reactor. One man survives the crash. The man, Ace, knows how to make a bomb with the reactor. Alliance-leader Col. Joseph Hendricksson takes Ace and they travel across the great irradiated desert to met with the NEB leaders. Along the way they find a small boy and though they don't want to, bring him along. Unfortunately, by the time they get to the NEB headquarters, the screamers have killed all but Becker, a tough soldier, Ross, who is nearly mad, and sexy smuggler Jessica. When Becker and Ross see the boy, they think he is a screamer and kill him. They are right and soon the little group find themselves surrounded by the hellish killing machines, all of which have taken the shapes of small boys.more
Rating: R (adult situations/language, nudity, violence)
Genre: Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By: Dan O'Bannon, Miguel Tejada-Flores
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 6, 2000
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment


Peter Weller
as Joseph Hendricksson
Roy Dupuis
as Becker
Ron White
as Elbarak
Leni Parker
as Corporal McDonald
Sylvain Masse
as NEB Soldier
Bruce Boa
as Secretary Green
Tom Berry
as Technician
Henry Ramer
as Narration
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Screamers

Critic Reviews for Screamers

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (10)

Based on a short story by the great nutball sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick, Screamers is more like a high-pitched rip-off of Alien.

Full Review… | July 6, 2010
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

A fun, fast-paced futuristic thriller with enough jolts per frame to keep even the most impatient action fan happy.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

The design and effects teams have lent scale and impact to the futuristic locations and sets. If only Duguay's flashy, aimless direction had succeeded in filling these barren wastes and antiseptic interiors with something resembling human life.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Until it succumbs to one cliche too many, Screamers, which was directed by Christian Duguay, does an efficient job of generating a stomach-knotting tension.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

There's nothing exhilarating or enjoyable in any of this.

Full Review… | February 13, 2001
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

In its last minutes Screamers becomes the last thing it intends to be -- laughable.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Screamers


A collection of soldiers and refugees from a civil war on an abandoned colony planet are hunted by an army of self replicating killing machines that have evolved from their own mechanical booby traps. Screamers actually starts with a lot of promise as the usual sci-fi cliches are tempered with some interesting politics and an underlying message about the dangers of meaningless cold wars and the ultimate price to pay for the arms races that accompany them. The no-name cast acquit themselves reasonably well and despite the variable quality of some of the effects, it provides some atmospheric and tense scenes as the motley crew of survivors attempt to evade their unseen enemies. Unfortunately the script didn't seem to know where to go from there and it all gets a little twist happy and silly by the end. But the biggest problem with Screamers is it treads the same ground as some of the best sci-fi films of all time; namely Aliens and The Terminator and seriously suffers in comparison, especially considering how low budget and straight to DVD it all feels. It's not terrible though, and a strong performance by Weller and some inventive sequences make it a reasonable way to wile away an hour and a half. If you haven't seen either of the aforementioned classics though, there's really no contest.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

Great Film and a good performace for Peter Weller.Nice idea for a movie and the soundtrack is fitting.
It's a blast.

Brian De Guelle

Super Reviewer

This sci-fi film is fine, but slow-paced and predictable.

Dean McKenna

Super Reviewer

Screamers Quotes

– Submitted by Nick S (3 years ago)
– Submitted by Georgia C (3 years ago)

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