Superman IV: The Quest for Peace


Superman IV: The Quest for Peace

Critics Consensus

The Superman series bottoms out here: the action is boring, the special effects look cheaper, and none of the actors appear interested in where the plot's going.



Total Count: 44


Audience Score

User Ratings: 65,915
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Superman IV: The Quest for Peace Photos

Movie Info

Superman (Christopher Reeve) tries to save the world from nuclear destruction at the hands of Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) in this action film featuring the man of steel. In a speech to the United Nations, Superman declares he will rid the world of all nuclear weapons. Arch-villain Luthor emerges from prison obsessed with killing Superman and creates an adversary known as Nuclear Man (Mark Pillow). The two engage in a fight to the finish in various landmarks on Earth before taking their battle into outer space. When Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) invites both Superman and Clark Kent to a double-date dinner, Superman's powers are tested so that both men can be present. Jackie Cooper plays the gruff veteran newspaper editor Perry White, with Marc McClure as Jimmy Olsen. Sam Wanamaker plays tabloid tycoon David Warfield, the millionaire who buys the Daily Planet. Mariel Hemmingway is Warfield's daughter Lacy, Clark Kent's date at Lois' luxury apartment. This is the least interesting of the four Superman movies starring Christopher Reeve. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi

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Christopher Reeve
as Superman/Clark Kent
Gene Hackman
as Lex Luthor
Mark Pillow
as Nuclear Man
Margot Kidder
as Lois Lane
Jackie Cooper
as Perry White
Marc McClure
as Jimmy Olsen
Jon Cryer
as Lenny
William Hootkins
as Harry Howler
Sam Wanamaker
as David Warfield
Jim Broadbent
as Jean Pierre Dubois
Mariel Hemingway
as Lacy Warfield
Stanley Lebor
as General Romoff
Don Fellows
as Levon Hornsby
Robert Beatty
as U.S. President
Bradley Lavelle
as Tall Marshall (Chain Gang)
Czeslaw Grocholski
as Russian General 1
Steve Plytas
as Russian General 2
John Hollis
as Russian General 3 (Kremlin)
Bob Sherman
as Senator - Pentagon
Eiji Kusuhara
as U.N. Guard - Japanese
Yuri Borienko
as Russian General - Red Square
Boris Isarov
as Cosmonaut Captain
Jayne Brook
as Teacher - JFK High School
Ron Travis
as Convict
Ted Maynard
as Army Chief
Raymond Marlowe
as Navy Chief
Mark Caven
as Priest - Boystown
Keith Edwards
as Technician - Fort Mason
Esmond Knight
as Second Elder
Eugene Lipinski
as Cosmonaut - Space Walker
Dennis Creaghan
as Bill Compton
Philip Fox
as Husband - Great Wall of China
Peter Penry-Jones
as Tourist - Great Wall of China
Kerry Shale
as MBC Newscaster
Susannah York
as Superman's Mother, Lara
Mac MacDonald
as Marshall 1
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Critic Reviews for Superman IV: The Quest for Peace

All Critics (44) | Top Critics (11) | Fresh (5) | Rotten (39)

Audience Reviews for Superman IV: The Quest for Peace

  • Sep 26, 2017
    Not many people would agree with me but I actually liked it more that the third, It's still a very poor film, Full of plot holes and poor acting, The effects were cheap, The action was poor, I didn't mind the plot apart from the whole Nuclear Man origin thing, It's the shortest Superman film which we have to thank for, It's a shame the original movies ended how they did as it really puts a whimper on the first two.
    Jamie C Super Reviewer
  • Jun 21, 2016
    The franchise dumped Lester and brought back Gene Hackman as Lex Luthor in this film that Christopher Reeve submitted the story for. This was one of those films that wanted to send a message by using its characters. This time it was for global nuclear disarmament. It has Superman going to the United Nations to convince the world to rid itself of its nuclear arsenals. Lex Luthor, however, attaches a kit with a piece of Superman's DNA to a nuclear rocket that Superman throws into the sun and it creates Nuclear Man that Superman must battle. While this film didn't even closely stand up to the greatness of the first 2 films, it was still better than Superman III. Bringing back Luthor was a wise idea for this one and is probably what saved this film from an even worse score.
    Patrick W Super Reviewer
  • Apr 07, 2016
    Somehow more childish than the 1940s Fleischer & Famous Superman cartoons that were aimed squarely at kids, the horribly miscalculated bomb The Quest for Peace created a cancer-causing fallout so tenacious that it wouldn't dissipate for nearly 20 years. It plays even poorer today. George Reeves' '50s iteration of the Man of Steel might prove to be classic television, but the staid silliness of the series hasn't aged well. That said, the entire run of that program looks positively naturalistic and ripped-from-the-headlines when compared with the insultingly over-the-top goings-on of Superman IV. With a villain so laughable that his appearance single-handedly turns the production into an outright comedy, Superman IV is riff-worthy from the word 'no.' In this painfully bad PG-rated sequel, the Man of Steel (Reeve) crusades for nuclear disarmament and meets Lex Luthor's (Hackman) latest creation, Nuclear Man. Alexander and Ilya Salkind, the producers of the first three go-rounds, smartly chose to sit this one out. Gene Hackman, however, returns to cash a sizable paycheck and create a Solar-powered Superman clone with a perfectly coiffed mullet. That Superman creators Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel lived to see this dreck put the nail in coffin of a once-decent franchise is appalling...though certainly not as appalling as Warner Bros. not compensating them for creating an American icon...but a close second. Bottom line: Nuclear Waste
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 04, 2016
    I'm actually one of the few people that enjoy this film. The reason? I enjoy the preceding Christopher Reeve 'Superman' films and I am fond of various 'Superman' drawings. The acting may be goofy, but I didn't mind that. The same thing goes for the special effects such as Superman repairing the Great Wall of China with his eyes, a woman breathing in space on her own and the battle between Nuclear Man and Superman. To me, 'Superman IV' is not actually bad, but it was somewhat comical (unintentionally) and it was just LOTS OF FUN! Hooray for Superman!
    David T Super Reviewer

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