*batteries not included (1987)

PG   |    |  Comedy, Family, Fantasy

*batteries not included (1987) Poster

Apartment block tenants seek the aid of alien mechanical life-forms to save their building from demolition.

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  • Jessica Tandy in *batteries not included (1987)
  • Frank McRae in *batteries not included (1987)
  • Jessica Tandy in *batteries not included (1987)
  • *batteries not included (1987)
  • Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn in *batteries not included (1987)
  • Elizabeth Peña and Jessica Tandy in *batteries not included (1987)

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Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews

12 February 2016 | SnoopyStyle
| good family fare
Elderly couple Frank (Hume Cronyn) and Faye Riley (Jessica Tandy) who is suffering from dementia run a small diner in an old apartment building. The NYC neighborhood is being torn down. Thugs led by Carlos hired by property developer Lacey and his henchman Kovacs (John Pankow) are pushing the tenants out. The tenants include pregnant Marisa Esteval (Elizabeth Peña), former boxer Harry Knoble (Frank McRae) and starving artist Mason Baylor desperate to save the building. The cops refuse to help. A couple of small UFOs arrive and change everything.

This definitely has the tone of an old Disney family film. Like those movies, this is strictly family fare which does tackle some slightly darker issues. The tone can be a little awkward at times for modern audiences but it absolutely works for this film. The special effects are terrific for the time. This features Brad Bird who contributed to his first theatrical screenplay in this.

Critic Reviews

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Did You Know?


The building that housed Hume Cronyn's lunch counter was a unique old building that was the only one on the block. Twenty-five years earlier it was used for the Judy Holliday musical Bells Are Ringing (1960) with the block in the same condition.


Faye Riley: What ever happened to General Eisenhower? You hardly read a word about him anymore.


When the space machines enter the Riley's apartment the first machine sees the electrical plug in the kitchen which has the toaster plugged into the bottom plug. When the second machine crashes on the kitchen counter the toaster is now plugged into the top plug.

Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, pictures of young Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy are shown. This includes their actual wedding photo, since the actors (who often play a married couple on stage or in the movies) were married for decades.

Alternate Versions

When aired on KTLA in 1991, the following scenes were omitted: When Frank attempts to give Faye her medicine; Before Frank asks for somebody to help them, he breaks a vace and kicks a chair; a scene of Carlos and his gang planning; Frank and Faye are reading the newspaper and while one of the spaceships pours them coffee, Faye asks what ever happened to General Eisehower; Harry searches his room for his whistle; While Marissa, Hector and his friends hold a fiesta in the apartment, Mason sits outside and drinks.


Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee
Written by
Irving Berlin
Performed by Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn


Plot Summary

Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Comedy | Family | Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,326,530 (USA) (20 December 1987)


$32,945,797 (USA)

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