The Running Man


The Running Man

Critics Consensus

The Running Man is winking sci-fi satire with ridiculous clothes and workmanlike direction.



Total Count: 40


Audience Score

User Ratings: 80,733
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Movie Info

An unjustly accused prisoner in 2019 is given a slim chance at freedom if he enters a battle-to-the-death on a television game show. Dawson steals the show as the slimy host!

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Yaphet Kotto
as Laughlin
Richard Dawson
as Damon Killian
Jim Brown
as Fireball
Jesse Ventura
as Captain Freedom
Brian Kestner
as Med Tech
Roger Bumpass
as Don Pardo
Donna Hardy
as Mrs. McArdle
Lynne Marie Stewart
as Edith Wiggins
George P. Wilbur
as Lt. Saunders
Sondra Holt
as Suzie Checkpoint
Sidney Chankin
as Custodian
Kim Pawlik
as Newscaster
Roger Kern
as Travel Pass Guard
Barbara Lux
as Elderly Lady
Lin Shaye
as Propaganda Officer
Boyd R. Kestner
as Yuppie Yeller
Charlie Phillips
as Teenage Punk
Greg Lewis
as Locker Room Manager
John William James
as Barrio Bettor
Jon Cutler
as Underground Tech
Joel Kramer
as Soldier
Billy Lucas
as Soldier
Daniel Celario
as Barrio Foreman
Mario Celario
as Barrio Foreman
Joe Leahy
as Narrator
Wayne Grace
as 911 Security Officer #1
Franco Columbu
as 911 Security Officer #2
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Critic Reviews for The Running Man

All Critics (40) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (26) | Rotten (14)

  • The years have been as unkind to it as they have been to its star's career.

    Mar 4, 2019 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • Schwarzenegger sadistically dispatches the baddies, enunciating typical wisecrack remarks (many repeated from his previous films), but it's all too easy.

    Apr 30, 2008 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • Pretty warmed-over stuff, this future world of the terminal TV game shows, and director Glaser fails to muster much pace and punch.

    Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…

    Geoff Andrew

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • It's not quite Network, but then it also doesn't take itself too seriously.

    Aug 30, 2004 | Rating: 3/5
  • You want to know if The Running Man is a good-time macho show, right? Stay at home and watch professional wrestling.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Full Review…
  • The movie's problem is that all of the action scenes are versions of the same scenario.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Running Man

  • May 23, 2014
    Effective Sci Fi action that manages to be entertaining despite its lack of originality, The Running Man is another Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle that I would recommend purely for fans of the actor. Although far from perfect, this is a pleasant popcorn film that is pure 80's. The film looks a bit dated; nonetheless, there are still relevant aspects that ring out today. Arnie's performance is pretty good, but I have to admit, it's not one of his best either. The Running Man, is your typical ass kicking Schwarzenegger film, and it does the trick, and for genre fans, it's a must watch. Despite the movie's shortcomings, it's worth seeing if you enjoy 80's action flicks, then give this one a shot. The story is well executed, but like I said, is never anything original. The film nonetheless works due to Schwarzenegger's performance, which has the unique touch that he always brings to his roles. Sure, it's not his best work, but it's fun for what it tries accomplish, and it's a movie that is action packed from start to finish. And for action buffs, you can't ask for more. Some elements of the film stand out, and it's one of those movies that seems to be forgotten from Schwarzenegger, and unless you're a diehard fan of his work, then this one seems to pop up. Well, it's a flawed film for sure, and it's a bit predictable too, but it's 80's action for what it is, and genre films likes nowadays are rare. So, if you enjoy a good old fashioned action picture or you're a fan of Schwarzenegger, then buckle up for an entertaining roller coaster ride that's worth taking.
    Alex r Super Reviewer
  • Apr 20, 2014
    The film is sort of a satire . . . unfortunately it's one without any bite. If it was a little less goofy and retained more of the angry, pessimistic tone of the novel, it probably could have been a lot better.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 10, 2013
    Directors C Super Reviewer
  • May 21, 2012
    The Running Man is an iconic science fiction action film based on a Stephen King a novel. In a dystopian future, Ben Richards, a wrongly convicted man, must compete in a live televised mortal combat tournament where criminals are turned into modern-day gladiators that must fight for survival. The film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Richard Dawson, and Jesse Ventura, who are all cast in roles that play to their strengths. Some interesting issues are explored in the film and it has an remarkable visual style that has a unique retro feel to it. The Running Man is a fun and entertaining film that tries to integrate some relevant social commentary.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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