The Final Countdown (1980) - Action, Sci-Fi

Hohum Score



A modern aircraft carrier is thrown back in time to 1941 near Hawaii, just hours before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

IMDB: 6.7
Director: Don Taylor
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Martin Sheen
Length: 103 Minutes
PG Rating: PG
Reviews: 14 out of 155 found boring (9.03%)

One-line Reviews (93)

Though it sometimes has the look and feel of one of those low budget actioners, and the script is often less than what we are used to, the movie is quite well done with an extremely compelling and intriguing story.

But I found it original and unpredictable, a fine addition to the spate of time-travel-paradox movies that never panders to the booms-n-bangs crowd.

The Final Countdown takes what would have made for a very entertaining Twilight Zone episode and manages to turn it into a surprisingly effective full length feature, one that poses that old scientific dilemma: if you had the power to prevent a catastrophe in the past, would you do so, knowing full well that the future would be irrevocably altered in the process?

He provides fascinating details about the actual shooting such as the fact that all the shipboard scenes were filmed on board the Nimitz during a brief layover and a week-long training exercise.

It has an excellent cast but what is compelling is the reaction of the 1941 characters who confront a nuclear aircraft carrier from the future.

Don't waste your time .

However, the ending, if predictable, is highly gratifying.

Thoroughly enjoyable sci-fi romp.

But it gets tiresome after awhile, though it does remain quite visible, so you can fast-forward without fear of missing anything.

With a superb cast (Charles Durning, Martin Sheen, James Farentino, Katherine Ross), an intelligent script, and a real aircraft carrier and its jets at his disposal, director Don Taylor delivers a thoroughly absorbing tale that offers both exciting action (the flying scenes are wonderful—who needs CGI when you have the real deal?

That's a part of the film's premise and we have to accept it or immediately leave the theater.

A hugely enjoyable "Boy's Own" type adventure .

But all emerge unscathed in a genuinely entertaining romp through time.

Most dialog consists of realistic but dull carrier business (i.

Other comments have made my main point: this movie takes a fascinating concept with innumerable possibilities and then fails to make much of them.

I found this movie boring and unimaginative.

Having set up an intriguing situation, the film makers seem unsure what to do with it.

On the negative side, the repetitive musical score was very cheesy and was detrimental to the film.

The entire cast delivers their lines like they are bored.

It is totally entertaining and if one doesn't believe in the time warp concept, then this will change your mind.

i'd highly recommend it as a rental at the very least.

It's utterly pointless.

Totally engrossing...

) But it's a fun yarn, good to see Kirk Douglas still fit as a fiddle, and an enjoyable opportunity to revisit some of the great questions about the attack on Pearl Harbor: could it have been prevented?

The story has time paradox but is engaging supported by a magnificent cast.

this one will have you on the edge of your seat.

It realisticly blends the three into a compelling and thought provoking piece of entertainment.

I've just seen The Final Countdown for the first time and found it very enjoyable.

This was a highly entertaining sleeper about a naval ship that happens to go through a time warp and end up at Pearl Harbor just hours before the attack in 1941.

The action is pretty exciting and seeing all of those Navy jets would have been enough to get anybody who likes military aircraft watching.

There's lots of anachronistic technology clashes, confusion, scene chewing, and general (or admiral) fun.

Highly Entertaining & Thought Provoking Film .

*mild spoilers ahead*This film is still enjoyable twenty years after I first saw it in the cinema.

Two points for being Pointless and Disappointing.

The result is a genuinely exciting show- a great warship going through its paces.

Anyway back to the movie, it was fun, an enjoyable little Twilight Zone-esque escapade which I find agreeable on most days.

That is the question this intriguing science fiction yarn presents, in a highly imaginative, engaging, and intelligent way.

I'm really surprised that this film is not more popular, because this was a very unique and fascinating concept for a movie, especially back in 1980.

Suffice to say, in my opinion, this story has handled an often-used theme in a clever, engaging way, with fine performances.

Pointless film, great photography .

It's just bad, waste of time.

) and intense drama.

As a fan of science fiction and war films, this one is a treat, because it combines both genres in an entertaining way.

Although the Final Countdown is not a particularly great movie, it is entertaining and interesting.

It's somewhat silly, but it's entertaining.

Most entertaining.

It was historical and entertaining combined and I enjoyed watching it with my teenage children.

However, the rest of the movie is incredibly boring.

Well worth watching on a quiet Sunday afternoon.

It's certainly not Academy Award material, but it's a fascinating story that combines aspects of war, love, philosophy and science fiction.

One begins wishing for even a long, drawn-out conversation between two of the characters about those various possibilities.

Martin Sheen is still in his younger years here and this movie is the definitive acknowledgement that his son is his spitting image, capable of arousing confusion on the screen.

cheesy, slow, not glossy enough).

Also, the picture is just plain entertaining - something I think we sometimes overlook in our analyses.

Slick, compelling entertainment.

The exposition is very exciting, and I found my heart was literally racing for the first twenty minutes.

Thoughtful & Exciting.

"The Final Countdown" however is a good film not just due to it's actors, but because it is a well written story which ticks along nicely until it's predictable conclusion.

It's still a relatively entertaining film, boosted significantly by stars Kirk Douglas and Martin Sheen.

Although the twist in the end could have been played on/explored a little bit more, it is overall, an enjoyable movie for a Sunday afternoon

Time travel, and its supposed existence, has also been a fascinating subject for movies, and this film plays that angle to the hilt.

There's no denying that it's eventual solution regarding the attack feels slightly rushed, whilst the one deeply philosophical scene is also cut short, but as a complete piece, it is entertaining enough, and well thought out enough, to keep the audience interested.

Once out of port they encounter a storm unlike any other in history and though they're slow to comprehend it, the U.

I own the DVD, have watched it several times, and it's always entertaining.

A largely historically accurate account of the US Navy aircraft carrier Nimitz's accidental trip back through time to December 1941, this is a hugely enjoyable "Boy's Own" type adventure.

Altogether a far more interesting premise than the rather pointless one the film finally opts for.

Pacing is effective, the dialogue intelligent, and the story completely absorbing.

The scenes of the carrier operations was the most fascinating scenes that I repeat viewing that specific part several times.

You could drive the USS Nimitz through the plot holes in this very entertaining entropy-effect sci-fier.

While those expecting an action packed battle between modern jets and Japanese fighter planes will undoubtedly feel a little cheated by the film's less than spectacular denouement, which solves Yelland's awkward problem with the introduction of a second very timely time portal, the fun twist ending should leave most viewers with a big grin on their face.

At the least, it's an entertaining story.

Though still exciting in "box" format, the widescreen original was breathtaking.

knew how to approach this film from an actor's standpoint, but James Frarentino and Charles Durning were worth watching.

An aircraft carrier, (in an unconvincingly contrived way), goes back in time to the day just before the Pearl Harbour attack and does....

Anyway, the movie is enjoyable enough, the ending was so very disappointing though.

I really enjoyed it .

In addition to its being entertaining, enjoyed seeing Kirk Douglas, who although in his mid-60's, still looked vigorous and hale.

That said, anything with Martin Sheen is worth watching.

The story is intriguing--what would YOU do if you were commanding a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier full of supersonic jets, etc, when you were transferred through a time-warp (ref: a CHEESY looking laser and smoke effect storm!

Quite entertaining and provocative.

Do see it,it's worth it,it's not like any other movie (Like those movies that have the same thing over and over again so you get bored,like killing car chases,a zero gets hero,a guy does the unexpected).

Don't waste your time with this.

Meanwhile, we do see F-14s engaging some Zeroes, and some taut, well acted scenes by Charles Durning, James Farentino, Martin Sheen, and one of my favorite character actors as the Japanese pilot, Soon Teck-Oh.

Very Entertaining .

Entertaining B-movie what-if .

I know first time seeing it on the screen and it looked to be a huge drama, action-thriller or something in the beginning, and then suddenly the most unexpected thing happens.

) All in all, I think it was a great piece of science fiction and a very enjoyable 'what if'...

There's some exciting action, very nice widescreen photography (this is the kind of movie that needs to be seen in its intended aspect ratio, 2.35:1), and soaring music by John Scott.

Great science fiction usually makes one assumption - it might be time travel, or "slow glass" or human miniaturisation - and builds a logical world around it.

One of the worst movies I've ever seen .

The important stuff is left to the viewer's imagination, and this is what makes it very entertaining and provocative!

Epic but enjoyable mess with zero script.

This film features a rather intriguing premise; what would happen if a modern (circa 1980) aircraft carrier were to be transported back in time to Pearl Harbor on December 6th, 1941?