IMDb > The Last Days of Pompeii (1935)
The Last Days of Pompeii
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The Last Days of Pompeii (1935) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

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Writers:
James Ashmore Creelman (story) and
Melville Baker (story) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Last Days of Pompeii on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
18 October 1935 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
In the doomed Roman city, a gentle blacksmith becomes a corrupt gladiator, while his son leans toward Christianity. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Pompeii, Pageantry & Pontius Pilate See more (25 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Preston Foster ... Marcus

Alan Hale ... Burbix

Basil Rathbone ... Pontius Pilate
John Wood ... Flavius, as a Man

Louis Calhern ... Prefect (Allus Martius)
David Holt ... Flavius, as a Boy
Dorothy Wilson ... Clodia
Wyrley Birch ... Leaster
Gloria Shea ... Julia
Frank Conroy ... Gaius Tanno
William V. Mong ... Cleon, the Slave Dealer
Murray Kinnell ... Simon, Judean Peasant
Henry Kolker ... Warder
Edward Van Sloan ... Calvus
Zeffie Tilbury ... The Wise Woman
John Davidson ... Phoebus, Runaway Slave
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Betty Allen ... Woman (uncredited)
Reginald Barlow ... The Janitor of the Slave Market (uncredited)
Maurice Black ... Attendant in Gladiators' Training Room (uncredited)

Ward Bond ... Murmex of Carthage, a Gladiator (uncredited)
Tom Brower ... Runaway Slave (uncredited)
Curley Dresden ... Cato the Gladiator (uncredited)
Helen Freeman ... Martha (uncredited)
Winston Hibler ... Marcellus (uncredited)
Thomas E. Jackson ... The Lanista (uncredited)
Bruce King ... Scythian Prisoner (uncredited)
Marc Loebell ... Lucius (uncredited)
Michael Mark ... Pompeii Nobleman (uncredited)

Edwin Maxwell ... The Augur, a Pompeii Official (uncredited)
Margaret McWade ... Calvus' Wife (uncredited)
Jack Mulhall ... Citizen of Pompeii (uncredited)
John T. Murray ... Pilate's Servant (uncredited)
Ole M. Ness ... Drusus, Runaway Slave (uncredited)
Marie Osborne ... Extra (uncredited)
Jason Robards Sr. ... Tax Gatherer (uncredited)
Jim Thorpe ... Spectator Tossing Coins (uncredited)
Hannah Williams ... Citizen of Pompeii (uncredited)

Directed by
Ernest B. Schoedsack 
Merian C. Cooper (uncredited)
 
Writing credits
James Ashmore Creelman (story) and
Melville Baker (story)

Ruth Rose (screenplay)

Boris Ingster (collaborator for adaptation)

Jerry Hutchinson  contributor to treatment (uncredited)
G.B. Stern  contributor to treatment (uncredited)

Produced by
Merian C. Cooper .... producer
 
Original Music by
Roy Webb 
 
Cinematography by
J. Roy Hunt 
Jack Cardiff (uncredited)
 
Film Editing by
Archie Marshek  (as Archie F. Marshek)
 
Art Direction by
Van Nest Polglase 
 
Costume Design by
Aline Bernstein 
 
Makeup Department
Robert J. Schiffer .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Howard Smit .... assistant makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ivan Thomas .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Byron L. Crabbe .... art technician (as Byron Crabbe)
Alfred Herman .... associate art director (as Al Herman)
Thomas Little .... set dresser
Aloys Bohnen .... art work (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Walter Elliott .... sound effects
Clem Portman .... sound recordist
 
Special Effects by
Harry Redmond Sr. .... special effects (as Harry Redmond)
Vernon L. Walker .... photographic effects (as Vernon Walker)
Harry Redmond Jr. .... special effects (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Marcel Delgado .... miniatures (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Yakima Canutt .... stunts (uncredited)
Cliff Lyons .... stunts (uncredited)
Buster Wiles .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Eddie Linden Jr. .... photographic technician (as Eddie Linden)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Philip Faulkner Jr. .... music recordist (as P.J. Faulkner Jr.)
Maurice De Packh .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Hugo Friedhofer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Bernhard Kaun .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Bernhard Kaun .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Max Steiner .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Roy Webb .... musical director (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Willis H. O'Brien .... chief technician (as Willis O'Brien)
John Speaks .... production associate
Russell Lewis .... director: dance numbers (uncredited)
Elizabeth McGaffey .... researcher (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
96 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Victor System)
Certification:
Australia:PG | USA:Approved (certificate #1263) | West Germany:12 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
According to the book The RKO Story, this film cost $237,000 more than it grossed in its original release, but finally broke even with the box office from a 1949 re-release, paired with She (1935).See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: As Vesuvius erupts, a large gladiator statue topples in the arena. In the first view, a long shot, the statue cracks open across the chest, at the bottom of the rib cage. In the next view, from the perspective of a man about to be crushed, the torso is intact, and the crack is at the statue's neck.See more »
Quotes:
Pontius Pilate:I am innocent of the blood of this just man.See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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11 out of 11 people found the following review useful.
Pompeii, Pageantry & Pontius Pilate, 22 January 2002
Author: Ron Oliver (revilorest@juno.com) from Forest Ranch, CA

Conscious stricken after abandoning Christ on the way to Golgotha, a jaded slave trader witnesses THE LAST DAYS OF POMPEII, and the city's horrific destruction.

Although burdened with occasional wooden acting, this is generally a fine historical drama. RKO spent quite a bit of money on its production and it shows in the large crowd scenes and still noteworthy special effects. The film boasted a very fine team behind the camera, working together as they had on KING KONG (1933). Directorial duties were shared by Ernest B. Schoedsack & Meriam C. Cooper. Special effects wizard Willis O'Brien worked his magic, while composer Max Steiner contributed a pounding score.

Preston Foster had one of his finest roles as the stalwart blacksmith turned gladiator and slaver. His performance during the prolonged climax, while desperately trying to save the life of his doomed son, is especially effective. David Holt & John Wood, playing the youth at different ages, are also very good.

Additional fine support is offered by Alan Hale as the rough mercenary who teams with Foster; and by villainous Louis Calhern as Pompeii's last prefect. Acting honors, however, go to marvelous Basil Rathbone, who gives a most sophisticated performance as Pontius Pilate, by turns rogue, fate's victim & moral philosopher.

Movie mavens should recognize Ward Bond as a boastful gladiator, elderly Zeffie Tilbury as a soothsayer, Edward Van Sloan as Pilate's clerk & Edwin Maxwell as a Pompeii official, all uncredited.

******************************

The film makes rather a mishmash of historical chronology. Young Flavius appears to be about ten years old at the time of Christ's crucifixion, which occurred around AD 29. It would be another fifty years - August 24, AD 79, to be precise - until Vesuvius' eruption destroyed Pompeii, yet Flavius is still depicted as a youthful fellow, just reaching maturity. Early Christian tradition also holds that Pilate committed suicide in AD 39 - four decades before Pompeii's rendezvous with destiny.

While using the same title & location, this film tells quite a different story from that of the classic 1834 novel by Baron Bulwer-Lytton.

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