Like this page? Click here:
Previous Title - The Shining Return to Full Title List Next Title - Short Circuit 2

Short Circuit [1986] (1 disc)

Director:John Badham
Writer:Brent Maddock
S.S. Wilson
Composer:David Shire
Length:99 minutes
(1 hour 39 minutes)
MPAA Rating:PG
Sorting Category:Comedy
Sorting Tub:Delta
IMDB Rating:6.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:53%
Amazon Rating:4.0/5 stars
User rating sites like above
are subject to change
Google Videos
  • Comedy
  • Sci-Fi
  • Kids
  • Family
  • Action
  • Puppets
  • Drama
  • Romance
Available Formats:
HD DVDBlu-ray
3D Blu-rayDigital
There is an iRiff file for this title
Click here to see list

Synopsis: A freak accident imbues a high tech piece of equipment with self awareness and emotions. (As always)

Reaction: A bit ridiculous, but enjoyable.

Personal Rating: 8/10

John Badham => Director
Brent Maddock => Writer
S.S. Wilson => Writer
David Shire => Composer
Ally Sheedy => Stephanie Speck
Austin Pendleton => Howard Marner
Barbara Tarbuck => Senator Mills
Brian McNamara => Frank
Fisher Stevens => Ben Jabituya
G.W. Bailey => Skroeder
John Garber => Otis
Marvin J. McIntyre => Duke
Penny Santon => Mrs. Cepeda
Steve Guttenberg => Newton Crosby
Tim Blaney => Number 5 (voice)
Tom Lawrence => Howard Marner's Aide
Vernon Weddle => General Washburne

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • As per the original movie's attempt to portray a living robot in the "real world", every part of Johnny and his brethren was built to have a specific, logical purpose behind them; this was originally a source of contention between the director and the prop designer, the latter of whom insisted on giving Johnny "eyes" to give the character a method of visually expressing emotion. As a result, Johnny's iconic "eyelids" were created, with the explanation that they were sun guards/camera coverings.
  • The gangster movie featuring George Raft that Number 5 is watching, and later imitating (using Raft's famous "coin flipping") is Scarface.
  • In this film and Short Circuit 2, Johnny 5's voice is provided by puppeteer Tim Blaney. This casting decision was made due to the director's belief that real-time interaction with the robot prop would make the interaction seem more natural on-screen than if they edited Johnny's voice in during post-production.
  • Many of the little tricks done by Johnny 5 on-screen (like flipping through book pages in a blink of the eye and tossing a washer into the air in a mimic of a scene from an old gangster movie he saw) were done using relatively simple, yet ingenious sleight-of-hand prop effects. For instance, the pages were flipped using an air hose, while the washer was flipped using a piece of string at both ends sideways. Not only did this save money for the producers for the actual robot and the screenplay, but they proved remarkably effective in getting just the right look needed for the scenes.
  • This film was originally conceived as a dark high-tech thriller with Number 5 as the villain of the picture: an out-of-control, heavily-armed military robot that had escaped from the lab that had developed him.
  • After Frank is knocked down with the tray, the arms of the person operating Johnny 5 can be seen as the robot turns to run.
  • The [3 Stooges] short that #5 is watching is the end of Woman Haters.
  • Stephanie and Number 5 dance to a scene from Saturday Night Fever which was also directed by John Badham.
  • From the first movie to the second, Ben's last name changes.