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Modems in the Movies: the early years

Classic tech movie moments from the 80s and 90s

In 1980s movies, modems had the power to change high school grades, wreck laboratories, and even spark global nuclear conflict. Here are some classic and silly modem movie moments from a time before the technology caught on.

Real Genius (1985)

The early Val Kilmer vehicle Real Genius features a comical climactic sequence in which super-nerd Chris Knight (Kilmer) brute-forces his way into the military's defense network to stop the government from using his grad-school laser project as a deadly weapon. Which forces us to ask: What exactly did he think they would do with it? Make popcorn?

Weird Science (1985)

While trying to create the perfect girlfriend from a combination of a Barbie doll and a computer, teen geeks Gary Wallace (Anthony Michael Hall) and Wyatt Donnelly (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) decide to hack in to the government network (which, if earlier '80s flicks are any indication, is very easy to do) to get more power. We're not convinced that the writers knew how modems worked.

NEXT PAGE: Ferris Bueller's Day Off

  1. Classic tech movie moments
  2. War Games
  3. Real Genius
  4. Ferris Bueller's Day Off


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