5.2/10
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Red Scorpion (1988)

A Soviet Special Forces soldier is sent on a mission to infiltrate an African rebel army and assassinate its leader, but the war machine they trained starts to think for himself.

Director:

Joseph Zito

Writers:

Robert Abramoff (story by), Jack Abramoff (story by) | 2 more credits »
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Stars: Dolph Lundgren, Ben Cross, Ivan Petrushinov
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dolph Lundgren ... Lt. Nikolai Rachenko
M. Emmet Walsh ... Dewey Ferguson
Al White ... Kallunda Kintash
T.P. McKenna ... General Vortek
Carmen Argenziano ... Col. Zayas
Alex Colon ... Mendez
Brion James ... Sgt. Krasnov
Ruben Nthodi Ruben Nthodi ... Ango Sundata
Vusi Dibakwane Vusi Dibakwane ... Guerilla Officer (as Vuzi Dibukwana)
James Mthoba James Mthoba ... Guerilla Officer
Dinky Motsemme Dinky Motsemme ... Guerilla Officer
Ernest Ndlovu Ernest Ndlovu ... Guerilla Guard / Guerilla
Thapelo Mofokeng Thapelo Mofokeng ... Guerilla (as Thapeld Mofokeng)
Mxolisi Hulana Mxolisi Hulana ... Guerilla
Nicky Rebelo Nicky Rebelo ... Occupation Officer
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Storyline

Hesitating in the moment he is about to kill the rebel leader, Nikolai fails and is captured. Rather than being killed outright, he is forced to undergo a shamanic initiation ritual. The ingestion of the poison of a local scorpion, and his initiation ceremony, including scarification (a scorpion), give him a new identity and role in the world -- the Red Scorpion. Written by Phillip Batz

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They think they control him. Think again... See more »

Genres:

Action | Adventure

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

South Africa | USA | Namibia

Language:

English | Russian

Release Date:

21 April 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Escorpião Vermelho See more »

Filming Locations:

Namibia

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Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,972,994, 23 April 1989

Gross USA:

$4,192,440

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,192,440
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (cinema release)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo (4 channels)| Mono (France)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Original script had different opening scene than the film. It included Nikolai on a Spetznaz training exercise in snowy Moscow and it was supposed to be really big action sequence, but it was cut out of the script because of the budget and schedule reasons. See more »

Goofs

During the final battle scene, the truck that Rachenko earlier stowed away in and which was destroyed is magically back in the army compound, undamaged. (Either that or it had the exact same identification number on the front bumper.) See more »

Quotes

Colonel Zayas: [Menacing Nikolai with a grenade] This is such a small space... and this is such a very big grenade!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Sound effects of various weapons firing and exploding are heard over the Little Richard song the plays during the closing credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Australian, Korean, German, UK and US DVD all lack the scene, where the Russian soldiers are burning down part of a village with flamethrowers. This scene comes right after the choppers drop the poisonous liquid on the rebels. See more »


Soundtracks

Uyandibiza
Performed by Amampondo
Words & Music by Mzoxolo Plaktjles
Courtesy of Claremont Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Red State Blues
8 April 2019 | by thesar-2See all my reviews

I had no problem with this action/rebellion/flip project. Typical 80s buffman with a gun for fun. I do like superhuman characters in movies, as long as the story's not too bad.

This one isn't terrible, it's literally down the middle, average and standard. Spy learns the other side isn't who they appear to be. Now, insert guns, explosions and a lot of shirtless hunk grunts.

It's not something I'd ever revisit, but even with starring such a meathead, it does have heart, a little bit of humor and lots of prop vodka. Think: popcorn entertainment.


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