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The Running Man (Special Edition) (1987)

Arnold Schwarzenegger , Maria Conchita Alonso , Paul Michael Glaser  |  R |  DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (337 customer reviews)

Price: $19.59 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Maria Conchita Alonso, Yaphet Kotto, Jim Brown, Jesse Ventura
  • Directors: Paul Michael Glaser
  • Writers: Stephen King, Steven E. de Souza
  • Producers: George Linder, Keith Barish, Rob Cohen, Tim Zinnemann
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Full Screen, NTSC, Original recording remastered, Special Edition, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1 EX), English (DTS ES 6.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Republic Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: March 16, 2004
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (337 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001932ZA
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #132,792 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Running Man (Special Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • "Lockdown on Main Street": a documentary about the current state of privacy and criminal issues in a post-9/11 society
  • "Game Theory": an inside look at reality-TV programming and its cultural impact on society
  • "Meet the Stalkers": obtain inside information about the deadliest foes in The Running Man

Editorial Reviews

Additional Features

Like many of the Governor's other DVD releases (Total Recall, Predator, and The Terminator 2: Judgment Day, to name a few) The Running Man has gone through various technical and bonus upgrades. Fans will not be disappointed with Lions Gate's latest, double-disc release of The Running Man (Special Edition). This is the first anamorphic (1.85:1) release and the first time the film has been presented in DTS 6.1 ES and Dolby Digital 5.1 EX. Without a doubt, this version is the best-looking and -sounding edition available. This is also the only edition to include a feature-length commentary; in this case, it's two. The first is with director Paul Michael Glaser and producer Tim Zinneman, the second with executive producer Rob Cohen. Both are geared more toward production than the themes and stories presented in the film, which is more or less appropriate considering The Running Man is first and foremost an action film that incorporates a few socio-political themes (reality TV, subjective media, and life in a high-security governmental state). Looking at the documentaries included in this set, however, you would think it was the other way around. Though well produced, the documentaries seem a little out of place. "Lockdown on Main Street" focuses on current post-9/11 issues with privacy and criminals. Though there is a common thread between the film and current events, using an '80s action film to discuss the controversial issue of privacy in a post-9/11 world comes across as a little tacky. The second documentary, "Game Theory," which focuses on reality TV and its cultural impact, is a little more on the mark and more relevant, but at times feels like a bit of a stretch. All in all, The Running Man (Special Edition) pretty much has got everything the Schwarzenegger and Richard Bachman (a.k.a. Stephen King) fan could want, other than an Arnold and King commentary. --Rob Bracco

Product Description

In this action thriller based on an early story by Stephen King, Los Angeles in the year 2017 has become a police state in the wake of the global economy's total collapse. All forms of entertainment are government controlled, and the most popular show on television is an elaborate game show in which convicted criminals are given a chance to escape by running through a gauntlet of brutal killers known as "Stalkers." Anyone who survives is given their freedom and a condominium in Hawaii, so when a wrongly accused citizen (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is chosen as a contestant, all hell breaks loose. Cheesy sets and a slimy role for game-show host Richard Dawson make this violent mess of mayhem a candidate for guilty pleasure; it is the kind of movie that truly devoted Arnold fans will want to watch more than once. And check those credits--choreography by Paula Abdul! "--Jeff Shannon"

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well-Filmed Sci-Fi Adventure Movie! August 16, 2002
Format:DVD
In this wry and entertaining take on a world gone crazy, where corporate rulers routinely engage popular sport activities to distill public anger and frustration and to try to distract common people from civic unrest, we find perpetual everyman Arnold Schwarzenegger caught in the vise-grip of official lies when he escapes from maximum security prison only to be caught and selected as the latest "contestant" (read `intended victim' here) for the overwhelmingly popular television program called, appropriately enough, "Running Man". The point of the game is for the contestant to survive being hunted down by a sewerful of villains while trying to make his way through a nightmarish maze. The villains are a bit campy, ranging from an outrageously garbed electric man who dispatches virtual lightning bolts to fry his prey out of existence to a chainsaw freak who attempts to hack his victims to death while riding his motorcycle.
Yet the action sequences more than make up for the sometimes-silly dialogue. The supporting cast is composed of veterans like Richard Dawson as the venomous game-show host and producer, who manipulates every aspect of the game to reach the storyline he has laid out. There are also a lot of cameos here, from Mick Fleetwood as a revolutionary to Jessie "The Body" Ventura as a sports commentator to Jim Brown as one of the slayers. The special effects are well done, and the action sequences provide plenty of vicarious violence for the moviegoer. Of course, Arnie has a waft of throwaway one-liners, and we know we are in the hands of experience when he tells Dawson the "he'll be back". Dawson, of course, not knowing whom he is dealing with, blows off the threat.
But the moviegoer knows Arnie will be back, and that he will win the day.
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56 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great remaster - pathetic extras April 18, 2004
By Jon
Format:DVD
You know the movie, so I'll cut to the details of this particular release...

The newly-remastered picture is so much clearer and more vivid than the original release and the DTS soundtrack is an awesome addition. After having heard it, I would've bought it for the DTS, alone. Who knew that a 17-year-old, stereo movie could be remastered to DTS quality and 6.1 surround so well (including very targeted use of the rear channels).

The extras are another story, as many people have stated. The "Lockdown on Main Street" is a thoroughly one-sided political statement. Regardless of anyone's beliefs, it doesn't belong on an action movie DVD. It feels like execs at Artisan were determined to put this documentary out there and picked "The Running Man" from their upcoming catalog as the best suitor.

The "Game Theory" documentary is just a piece in which creators and participants of early reality TV shows pat themselves on the back for their popularity. Perhaps fans of Survivor and other early reality TV will find it interesting, but I didn't.

In summary, the new remastering of the movie is "special," but nothing else on either of the discs is. As someone else said, buy it for the movie. It really is one of the best remastering jobs that I've ever seen (or heard).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a good DVD, but a Good Arnold flick November 13, 2002
Format:DVD
The Running Man tells of a future world where convicted fellons are put on a game show "The Running Man" and are placed in arenas along with psychotic stalkers who are there to kill these guys in record time all for the entertainment of the American people.
The film is great but not perfect. I love the way the film portrays society, as basically a bunch of mindless and gullable media slaves. Which some would argue is true for our society today, where we believe everything served to us on television and radio, not considering that maybe the people behind these stories are money hungry, heartless liars. It was almost like a future version of the Roman Empire, where upper class Romans found the most violent and bloody sport with slaves getting butchered in an arena as pure entertainment. This film uses the likes of rich corporate adults as the shows mainstream audience loving fellons get butchered the same way.
The films special effects are ahead of its time, with believable gore and movie props like futuristic cars and buildings.
Richard Dawson is great as the gameshow's host, as a lovable teddy bear on screen, and a greedy, self-involved liar backstage. The remaining cast do thier jobs well, although they could have found more talented actors. Arnold is Arnold, without him, this movie wouldn't have the box-office appeal that it did, nor would it have the appeal on todays audience that it did. And even though his one liners after each death border on stupidity in this film (with a lot of the other dialogue), his Arnoldness simply makes up for it.
This movie was a great and unique idea and it was executed just fine, I own this dvd and like it a lot. Although, giving us simply a trailer as an extra simply sucks. I wouldve like to hear some commentary on it at least. Oh well...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Running Man Review August 3, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
Efficient action movie vehicle for Schwarzenegger, starring as a framed convicted killer who becomes one of the contestants in sick television game show. He's pursued across a devastated Los Angeles in the year 2019 by trained hitmen. Stephen King's novel with its echoes of The Most Dangerous Game, provides an effective framework for Arnie's tough-guy act, and director Glaser expertly orchestrates the state-of-the-art special effects, nasty violence and unpleasant humor.
All I've forgotten is the Girl. All movies like this need a Girl, whose function is to be pulled helplessly behind the hero as he attempts his escape. By casting Maria Conchita Alonso in the role, the filmmakers got more than they bargained for; she remains one of Hollywood's undaunted high spirits, a nice comic counterfoil for Schwarzenegger.
The movie's problem is that all of the action scenes are versions of the same scenario. TV host Dawson introduces a killer and his trademark weapons (electical shock, fire, chain saws, etc.) and then Schwarzenegger faces him in battle. The one element in the movie that is not standard and that does have some energy is the TV show itself, with Dawson's performance as the egotistical, sleaze-bag host.
Playing a character who always seems three-quarters drunk, Dawson chain-smokes his way through backstage planning sessions and then pops up in front of the cameras as a cauldron of false jollity. Working the audience, milking the laughs and the tears, he is not really much different than most genuine game show hosts - and that's the movie's private joke.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great movie!
Published 18 hours ago by Michael R. Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good
Published 4 days ago by Jimmie Santiago
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
all is great
Published 20 days ago by Armond Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars Arnold at his best. I miss these great old movies
Arnold at his best. I miss these great old movies. Richard Dawson was at his best...
Published 22 days ago by malibugirl
4.0 out of 5 stars Wished Arnold Could make some PG 13 Movies for a Change
We all love Arnold in our home. I know he got some bad publicity with his wife and him getting divorce but who doesn't have problems? Everyone makes mistakes. Read more
Published 23 days ago by Pardon and Freed
5.0 out of 5 stars DMVMT
A typical Schwarzenegger movie. A lot of action, humor, and, as usual, a hero. The film, itself, is a little outdated, but it's still entertaining.
Published 1 month ago by DMVMT
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very good, Loy's of action.
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved this movie.
Published 1 month ago by Virginia Hart
3.0 out of 5 stars Still a good movie.
If I could I would have given this movie a 3 1/2 stars. Older technology, scenery, special effects aside. The movie is action packed with an interesting story. Read more
Published 1 month ago by A. Barnett
5.0 out of 5 stars Richard Dawson was the perfect person for the role he played in this...
Richard Dawson was the perfect person for the role he played in this film. It really made this a move I have watched over and over.
Published 1 month ago by busykidsmom
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Warning: This movie is region coded
if this Blu-Ray movie ( Running Man) is region coded why don't Amazon specify it as such. I live in Australia , region 2, and have come unstuck on a couple of occasions .
Feb 1, 2010 by Mr. James G. Farrell |  See all 2 posts
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