What is the name of the movie (between 1970-1989) that involved programming/reprogramming/hacking computers to trigger or stop a (probably global?) war?

I'm not sure whether the name of the movie contains "Battle" or "Wars".

It also has a kid who was pretty smart, who probably discovered how to hack the computers to trigger (or stop) the war.

closed as off-topic by JNat Jan 19 '18 at 12:04

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Identification questions are off-topic, because they tend to attract low-quality and low-effort posts. The community has decided to no longer support these questions. Please refer to this meta post for additional details." – JNat
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

locked by Shog9 Jan 19 '18 at 21:21

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here. This question and its answers are frozen and cannot be changed. See the help center for guidance on writing a good question.

Read more about locked posts here.


Is it WarGames?

It falls in your 20 year window (1983) and contains the word "war." A "global" war. It also featured a smart hacker kid, played by Matthew Broderick, who inadvertently starts a possible world war.

enter image description here

He must "teach" the computer that it is not possible to win a global thermonuclear war. This is accomplished by getting it to run through variations of Tic-Tac-Toe, introducing the computer to a no-win scenario. The computer (named Joshua) figures it out and the world is not destroyed.

enter image description here

The trailer can be viewed here.

  • 1
    Coincidentally there was a nice reference to it in the recent Winter Soldier. – Napoleon Wilson Apr 15 '14 at 15:32
  • > It also featured a smart hacker kid, played by Matthew Broderick, who inadvertently starts a possible world war. Can't be that smart then ;) – user9108 Apr 15 '14 at 20:41
  • 1
    What's really awesome is Joshua's programmer doesn't care at all the world is saved. He's just impressed that his computer learned something. – Almo Apr 15 '14 at 20:51
  • Great movie! If you're looking for more like it, I always thought The Manhattan Project with John Lithgow was an underrated film with a similar feel to WarGames. – Steve Apr 15 '14 at 21:46
  • 2
    What's also very impressive about this movie is that the hacking is actually very realistic. The kid spends days guessing passwords until he gets it. No funky looking GUI app with a progress bar that says "HAXXING PA$$W0RD" – System Down Apr 15 '14 at 22:15

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .