80s Movie Of The Day: The Soldier (1982)

80s Movie Of The Day: The Soldier (1982)

The Soldier released in 1982 starring Ken Wahl (who is probably best known for his role in the TV series Wiseguy) was a modest action hit that year raking in a box office of $6,328,816. This under-rated action flick is hard to find on most streaming platforms but has been re-released on Blu-Ray and is available on Amazon here.

Renegade KGB agents, headed by Ivan, hijack a plutonium shipment inside the United States and use it to plant a nuclear device in the Saudi Arabian Ghawar Oil Field. They threaten to detonate it, thereby contaminating 50% of the world’s oil reserve, unless Israel withdraws its settlements from the West Bank. In Washington, the American President contemplates starting a war with Israel, in order to save the world from a potential oil crisis. Washington is unaware that the KGB are behind this threat. The President orders the head of the CIA to find out who has planted the bomb and to do anything he can to stop this. The Soldier is then activated.


An elite CIA agent codenamed ‘The Soldier’ (Ken Wahl), working outside the usual channels, is assigned to the case. After Russian agent Dracha attempts to terminate him in the Austrian Alps, he contacts the CIA director from the US embassy in West Berlin. A KGB agent assassinates the director and frames The Soldier for his murder, leaving no official knowledge of his activities other than the president, who has disavowed any knowledge of his actions. On the run from his own government, he seeks refuge in the Israeli embassy. He and his team cooperate with the Israeli Mossad, represented by their director of covert operations Susan Goodman. Meanwhile, the president authorizes military action against Israel.

Given the unpleasant options of the KGB destroying a large part of the world’s oil supply or the United States having to invoke a military response to force Israel to remove its settlements from the West Bank, the Soldier decides to take the third option. His team infiltrates and captures a US nuclear missile silo in Smith Center, Kansas, and obtains independent launch capability. As the American military launches their airstrikes toward Israel, The Soldier and Susan break into East Berlin by launching their Porshe over the Berlin Wall, confronting the KGB agents and informing them that if their nuke in Saudi Arabia is detonated, his team in Smith Center will nuke Moscow. This forces the Russian KGB to dismantle their device in Saudi Arabia and the American airstrike is recalled.


Ken Wahl as The Soldier

Klaus Kinski as Dracha

Alberta Watson as Susan Goodman

William Prince as The President

Jeremiah Sullivan as Ivan

George Strait has a cameo appearance as himself, performing the song “Fool Hearted Memory”


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