Ready Player One's Blink-and-You'll-Miss-It Pop Culture References

Enter a world of nostalgia with Steven Spielberg's new sci-fi film

By Corinne Heller Mar 30, 2018 11:00 AMTags
Watch: Olivia Cooke Recalls Film Highlights From "Ready Player One"

Steven Spielberg's new sci-fi film Ready Player One is here!

The dystopian movie is set in the year 2044, where people escape their miserable reality by entering the VR world of the OASIS (Ontologically Anthropocentric Sensory Immersive Simulation). Tye Sheridan plays 18-year-old gamer Wade Watts, who hopes to find an Easter egg its creator planted in the world so he can inherit $500 billion and gain total control of the OASIS.

The world is filled with nostalgic pop culture references.

Wade drives a DeLorean straight out of Back to the Future. The trailer contains Depeche Mode's 1990 song "World in My Eyes," A-ha's 1985 track "Take on Me" and Van Halen's 1984 song "Jump"—perfect to blare from the Sharp boom box someone holds triumphantly. 


Wade drives the car / time machine from Back to the Future.

Freddy Krueger

The A Nightmare on Elm Street villain appears in the film...

Iron Giant does the star of the 1999 animated film.


The characters from the early '90s game franchise make an appearance

King Kong

The "Eighth Wonder of the World" makes an appearance.

Tracer, Chun-Li and Lara Croft

The Overwatch,Street Fighter and Tomb Raider game characters make cameos. 


The horror film star also makes a cameo.


Olivia Cooke's character Art3mis rides the motorcycle from the 1988 Japanese animated post-apocalyptic science fiction film.

A Nightmare on Elm Street's Freddy Krueger and the Iron Giant, from the 1999 animated film, also make appearances in the film, as do many video game characters.

Ready Player One also stars Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Lena Waithe, T.J. Miller and Simon Pegg and was released on Friday.

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