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Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)

PG | | Comedy | 29 January 1964 (USA)
An insane general triggers a path to nuclear holocaust that a war room full of politicians and generals frantically tries to stop.

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Top Rated Movies #54 | Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 13 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Frank Berry ...
Lt. Dietrich
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Adm. Randolph
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Lt. Kivel (as Glen Beck)
Roy Stephens ...
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Capt. 'Ace' Owens
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Burpelson AFB Defense Team Member
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Storyline

Paranoid Brigadier General Jack D. Ripper of Burpelson Air Force Base, believing that fluoridation of the American water supply is a Soviet plot to poison the U.S. populace, is able to deploy through a back door mechanism a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union without the knowledge of his superiors, including the Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Buck Turgidson, and President Merkin Muffley. Only Ripper knows the code to recall the B-52 bombers and he has shut down communication in and out of Burpelson as a measure to protect this attack. Ripper's executive officer, RAF Group Captain Lionel Mandrake (on exchange from Britain), who is being held at Burpelson by Ripper, believes he knows the recall codes if he can only get a message to the outside world. Meanwhile at the Pentagon War Room, key persons including Muffley, Turgidson and nuclear scientist and adviser, a former Nazi named Dr. Strangelove, are discussing measures to stop the attack or mitigate its blow-up into an all ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Red-Hot suspense story that's rocking and shocking the world! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, some violent content, sexual humor and mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

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Release Date:

29 January 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Delicate Balance of Terror  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,800,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

DEM 135,694 (West Germany) (24 December 1987)

Gross:

$275,902 (USA) (31 December 1994)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The illuminated symbols on the War Room map displays were cutouts lit by individual floodlights behind them. They generated so much heat that the display was damaged. Air-conditioning had to be installed. See more »

Goofs

General Turgidson tries to dismiss de Sadesky's claim of the doomsday device by saying radiation from a nuclear fallout is "down to a safe level after two weeks". But the idea of creating so called "salted" nuclear weapons by using cobalt in them was put forth by Leó Szilárd - the "father of the atomic bomb" - already in February 1950, and it is this concept that doomsday device in the movie is built on. The general would be well aware of salted bombs and their capabilities in 1963 when the movie takes place. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: For more than a year, ominous rumors had been privately circulating among high-level Western leaders that the Soviet Union had been at work on what was darkly hinted to be the ultimate weapon: a doomsday device. Intelligence sources traced the site of the top secret Russian project to the perpetually fog-shrouded wasteland below the Arctic peaks of the Zhokhov Islands. What they were building or why it should be located in such a remote and desolate place no one could say.
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Crazy Credits

The screenplay title is incorrectly spelled. It reads: 'Base' on the book "Red Alert" by Peter George. This is pointed out on the DVD supplement about the making of the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in TruInside: Heathers (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

When Johnny Comes Marching Home
(1863) (uncredited)
Music by the Union Army bandmaster, Louis Lambert
In the score often during the flight of Major 'King' Kong's aircraft
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A must see !!! ***** out of ****
5 June 2003 | by (the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls) – See all my reviews

Who else than Stanley Kubrick could take a serious subject like the cold war and tell the story like a comedy ??? He proves his genius in this film more like in any other film of his. It's the story about one general ( with the very appropriate name Jack D. Ripper) gone mad and he launches an attack on Russia all by himself. He's mad, but still smart enough to prevent that anyone can stop him. He's got this strange ( but very funny ) theories about body-fluids, but his men respect him and do everything he says. So 34 fully-armed plains are sent to as many targets. Meanwhile his Colonel, Mandrake, tries to talk sense to him and the president and another General are trying to warn the Russian prime minister. You can have nothing but great respect for Peter Sellers. He plays three roles in this film and every single one of them is flawless. The doctor Strangelove character is hilarious and creepy at the same time. His appearances as the doctor are, along with the telephone conversations between the president and the Russian Prime minister the funniest moments in the film... Also the classic bomb-ride of Major Kong off course. George C. Scott is clearly having fun in his role and the debut of James Earl Jones is also definitely worth mentioning. Like I said already...a must see film if you're a film lover in general.


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