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Soldier (1998 American film)

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Director  Paul W. S. Anderson
Music director  Joel McNeely
Country  United States
6/10 IMDb

Genre  Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
Budget  75 million USD
Writer  David Webb Peoples
Language  English
Soldier (1998 American film) movie poster

Release date  October 23, 1998 (1998-10-23)
Cast  Kurt Russell (Todd), Jason Scott Lee (Caine 607), Jason Isaacs (Colonel Mekum), Connie Nielsen (Sandra), Sean Pertwee (Mace), Gary Busey (Church)
Similar movies  Interstellar, Avatar, Aliens, Planet of the Apes, Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back, Alien
Tagline  Left for dead on a remote planet for obsolete machines and people, a fallen hero has one last battle to fight

Soldier 1998 official trailer kurt russell jason scott lee movie hd

Soldier is a 1998 American science fiction action film directed by Paul W. S. Anderson, written by David Webb Peoples, and starring Kurt Russell, Jason Scott Lee, Jason Isaacs, Connie Nielsen, Sean Pertwee and Gary Busey. The film tells the story of a highly skilled genetically advanced soldier defying his commanders and facing a relentless and brutal rival soldier.


Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

The film was released worldwide on October 23, 1998. Upon its release, Soldier received generally negative reviews but many praised the action sequences and Russell's performance. The film was a commercial failure, grossing $14 million worldwide against a production budget of $60 million.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

Soldier 1998 movie trailer fan made


Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

In 1996, as part of a new military training program, a group of orphaned infants is selected at birth and raised as highly disciplined soldiers with no understanding of anything but military routine. They are trained to be ruthless obedient killers, and all those considered to be physically or mentally unworthy are executed. The survivors are turned into impassive dedicated fighting machines with no exposure to or understanding of the outside world.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

In 2035, at the age of 40, Sgt. Todd 3465 is a hardened veteran and the best soldier of the original 1996 infants, but his unit is challenged for replacement by a superior unit. Colonel Mekum, the leader of the original project, introduces a new group of genetically engineered soldiers, designed with superior physical attributes and a complete lack of emotion, except complete aggression.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

Captain Church, the commander of Todd's unit, insists on testing the abilities of the new soldiers against those of his proven older ones. A new soldier, Caine 607, easily defeats three of the original soldiers, but Todd gouges out Caine's eye before he seemingly dies when he falls from a great height; the body of a dead soldier actually cushioned his fall, and he is simply stunned and knocked unconscious. Mekum orders their bodies disposed of like garbage, declaring them obsolete, while the remaining older soldiers are demoted to menial unarmed support roles.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

Dumped on Arcadia 234, a waste disposal planet, Todd limps toward a colony whose residents crash-landed there years earlier; as they were believed dead, no rescue missions have been attempted. Todd is sheltered by Mace and his wife Sandra. Though they try to make him welcome, Todd has difficulty adapting to the community due to his extremely rigid impassive conditioning and their conflict-free lives. Todd develops a silent rapport with their mute son, Nathan, who had been traumatized by a snakebite as an infant and watches upon the happy loving family with yearning in his eyes. When the child silently looks to him for a defense against a coiled snake, Todd refuses, demanding that Nathan face it down and strike back to protect himself. Nathan's parents intervene and disapprove of the lesson, unsure of how to deal with the silent soldier. Todd becomes disoriented by exposure to peaceful civilian life and soon begins to experience flashbacks from his time killing civilians and battling other soldiers. To make matters worse, he mistakes one of the colonists for an enemy when the fellow surprises him, nearly killing him. Fearful, the colonists expel Todd from the community. Apparently rejected by every society he has known, the military and the refugee civilians, Todd shows strong emotion for the first time after being expelled. Overcome by loss, he quietly cries. A short time later, Mace and Sandra are almost bitten by a snake while they sleep, but they are saved by Nathan's use of Todd's aggressive defensive technique to protect them. Now understanding the value of Todd's lesson, they seek him to reintegrate him into the community, regardless of the opposition of the others who fear him.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

The new genetically engineered soldiers arrive on the garbage planet, and, since the world is listed as uninhabited, Colonel Mekum decides to use the colonists' community as the target in a training exercise. Just after Mace finds Todd, apologizes and invites him back, the soldiers spot Mace and kill him. Though outmanned and outgunned, Todd's years of battle experience and superior knowledge of the planet allow him to return to the colony and kill the advance squad. Nervous that an unknown enemy force may be confronting them, Colonel Mekum orders the soldiers to withdraw and return with heavy artillery. Using guerrilla tactics, Todd outmaneuvers and defeats all of the remaining soldiers, including Caine 607, whom he defeats in vicious hand-to-hand combat by clever tactics rather than mere physical prowess.

Soldier (1998 American film) movie scenes

Panicking, Mekum orders the transport ship's crew, composed of Todd's old squad, to set up and activate a portable nuclear device powerful enough to destroy the planet. He then orders the ship to lift off, leaving the squad behind. When Captain Church objects, Mekum shoots him in cold blood. Before they can take off as planned, Todd appears, and his old comrades silently side with him over the army that has discarded them. They take over the ship, leaving Mekum and his supportive aides on the planet while they evacuate the remaining colonists. In an attempt to disarm the nuclear device, Mekum accidentally sets it off, killing him and his aides. Todd pilots the ship from Arcadia just ahead of the shockwave and sets course for the Trinity Moons, the colonists' original destination. When Nathan enters the control room and reaches for Todd, he then picks up Nathan and points to their new destination, while looking out upon the galaxy.

Connection to Blade Runner

Soldier was written by David Peoples, who co-wrote the script for Blade Runner. Peoples considers Soldier to be a "spin-off sidequel"-spiritual successor to Blade Runner, seeing both films as existing in a shared fictional universe. The film obliquely refers to various elements of stories written by Philip K. Dick (who wrote the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, on which Blade Runner is based), or film adaptations thereof. A Spinner from Blade Runner can be seen in the wreckage on a junk planet in the film.


Soldier grossed $14.6 million in the United States. It holds a 10% approval rating at Rotten Tomatoes based on 51 reviews. The consensus reads: "A boring genre film and a waste of a good set." Bruce Westbrook of the Houston Chronicle commented that "the action is handled fairly well, but it's routine, and there's no satisfaction in seeing Todd waste men who are no more bloodthirsty than he is." Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly criticized the film's overuse of genre clichés, saying "any cliché you can dream up for a futuristic action movie, any familiar big-budget epic you can think to rip off, Soldier has gotten there first." Michael Wilmington of the Chicago Tribune described the film as "a big, clanging, brutal actioner in which we search the murk in vain for the sparks of humanity the moviemakers keep promising us." Lisa Alspector of the Chicago Reader found the film to be enjoyable, calling Russell's performance "persuasive" and saying "this appealing formulaic action adventure displays a lot of conviction in its not-too-flashy action scenes and a little levity in the gradual socialization of Russell's character." Similarly, Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times gave the film a rating of 3.5 out of 5 and called it "a potent comic-book-style action-adventure."

Home media

DVD was released in Region 1 in the United States on March 2, 1999, and Region 2 in the United Kingdom on 2 August 1999, it was distributed by Warner Home Video. It was released as a double-sided disc, which included the widescreen version on one side, with full-screen on the other. Included on the disc was a film commentary. Soldier was released on Blu-ray for the first time in the U.S. on July 26, 2011.


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