An electrically operated surgical instrument includes a surgical end effector having an actuation assembly effecting a surgical procedure when actuated and a handle connected to the end effector for actuating the assembly. A part of the assembly moves between start and fully actuated positions. The handle has a self-contained power supply and a drive assembly disposed entirely within the handle. The drive assembly has an electrically powered motor and a controller electrically connected to the power supply and to the motor. The controller selectively operates the motor. A transmission mechanically connects the motor to the moving part and selectively displaces the moving part anywhere between the start and fully extended positions when the motor is operated. A manual release is mechanically coupled to the transmission to selectively interrupt the transmission and, during interruption, displaces the moving part towards the start position independent of motor operation.