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Starring the Computer is a website dedicated to the use of computers in film and television. Each appearance is catalogued and rated on its importance (ie. how important it is to the plot), realism (how close its appearance and capabilities are to the real thing) and visibility (how good a look does one get of it). Fictional computers don't count (unless they are built out of bits of real computer), so no HAL9000 - sorry.

Please let me know if you spot any mistakes, or have any tips about films not mentioned here that feature computers.

James Carter <james@starringthecomputer.com>


News

2022-06-12 17:30 A triplet of Commodores
Here are three more Commodore appearances. Fear Street: Part One - 1994 has an Amiga 2000, there's a Commodore 64 in the "Dimension 404" episode Polybius, and the Scarlet Cinema episode of the "Friday the 13th" television series has a PET.
2022-06-03 17:30 Atari 800x2
Two more appearances of the Atari 800 in this update in One Crazy Summer and the "Family Ties" episode A Tale of Two Cities: Part 1.
2022-05-29 13:39 Stranger Things, Season Four, First Volume
Here are all the computers I could identify in the first volume of "Stranger Things" season 4. There is Commodore Amiga 1000 in Chapter One: The Hellfire Club, a Kaypro 4 and a Tandy 2000 in Chapter Two: Vecna's Curse, a Heathkit H89 in Chapter Three: The Monster and The Superhero, a IBM PC XT in Chapter Four: Dear Billy and the Amiga makes its second appearance in Chapter Six: The Dive along with a DEC DecMate II.
2022-05-14 11:12 More PCs
Patriot Games sees the debut appearance of the Data General Dasher/386 as well as an IBM PS/2. There are IBM PC XTs in Miami Connection, X-Men: Apocalypse and "The Ray Bradbury Theatre" episode The Coffin. There is a Zenith Z150 in the "Hunter" episode The Usual Suspects, and finally a Compaq Prolinea makes an appearance in The Fast and the Furious.
2022-04-24 14:38 Terminated again
We already had the iconic appearance of the Atari Portfolio in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, but here are a few more machines from the film. There are IBM PC ATs and two other machines making their Starring-the-Computer debut: the IBM System/38 and the Mindset computer.
2022-04-18 17:21 More Big Iron
Here's a bunch more big iron. We start with a machine making its Starring-the-Computer debut: the Bull Gamma 60 plays a crucial role in Alphaville. Next is a trio of machines that have made many appearances: the IBM AN/FSQ-7 in Orgazmo, the Burroughs B205 in an episode of The Green Hornet and the ICT 1301 in the "Doctor Who" story Warriors of the Deep. There's a more rare appearance for an ICL 2900 in The Playbirds. And finally a couple of machines I'd missed on the first watch through: a LEO Computers LEO II in The Man with the Golden Gun and a Honeywell 6000 in 2010: The Year We Made Contact.
2022-04-10 15:56 The Computers and Loves of a She-Devil
Here are the computers that appear in the 1986 mini-series "The Life and Loves of a She-Devil". Episode 1 has the Apple Macintosh and, making its debut appearance, the Sinclair ZX Spectrum 128. Episode 3 has a Compaq Portable and some IBM PC XTs.
2022-04-03 21:27 April Apples and Assorted Additions
Loads of Apple machines here with a few others here and there. Season 1 of The Sleepover Club has the Clamshell iBook G3 and iMac G3. The "Don't Blame the Koalas" episode Guru Mark has a Powerbook 5300, and the "Home Improvement" episode Burnin' Love has a Powerbook 180. Catch That Kid has an iBook G4 and an iMac G4, along with an IBM Thinkpad T20. There is a Macbook Air along with Macbook Pros and Unibody iMacs in The Intern. The Macbook Air also appears in Fifty Shades of Grey. The Challenger Disaster has a IIe, a Macintosh and a Macintosh Classic (with the Tandy TRS-80 Model 4 thrown in for good measure). And finally, National Treasure: Book of Secrets as a Macbook and a Sony Vaio UX.
2022-03-16 00:33 Three more PCs
A Compaq Portable II plays an important role in the "Matlock" episode The Thief: Part 1. The first episode of Pugwall has a brief shot of an Olivetti M24. And finally, the Vendex Headstart Explorer makes its Starring-the-Computer debut in Guns.
2022-03-06 17:11 Cruella
It's always good to see another appearance of Starring the Computer's mascot - the Acorn Electron. It's latest outing is a brief appearance in the 2021 film Cruella.