Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1980s Stripes (1981)

Stripes (1981)

Bill Murray and Harold Ramis play best friends John Winger and Russell Ziskey who decide to leave their mundane layabout lives – as cab driver and schoolteacher respectively – and join the US Army in the mistaken belief that a modern serviceman’s life is the equivalent of a luxury holiday.

The pair quickly realises military duty is much more rigorous than either of them could ever have imagined.

The film eventually takes our anti-heroes to Italy, West Germany, and communist Czechoslovakia, where a jaunt in a commandeered high-tech and heavily armed recreational vehicle (the EM-50 Urban Assault Vehicle) creates an international incident and almost starts World War III when they cross into enemy territory.


Murray and Ramis are at their comedic best, as they go through basic training and butt heads with Sergeant Hulka (Warren Oates).

John Candy features prominently as Oxberger – a fat guy who joins the army to lose weight – with a supporting cast including Judge Reinhold, John Larroquette, P.J. Soles and Sean Young.

Think Police Academy . . . only funny!


John Winger
Bill Murray
Russell Ziskey
Harold Ramis
Sergeant Hulka
Warren Oates
P J Soles
Sean Young
“Ox” Oxberger
John Candy
Captain Stillman
John Larroquette
Stillman’s aide
John Voldstad
John Diehl
Colonel Glass
Lance LeGault
Roberta Leighton
Conrad Dunn
Judge Reinhold
Antone Pagan

Ivan Reitman