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Unknown World (1951)

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Ratings: 3.9/10 from 539 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 9 critic

Scientists use a gigantic drilling machine for an expedition to the center of the earth.


(as Terrell O. Morse)


(original screenplay)
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Title: Unknown World (1951)

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Complete credited cast:
Bruce Kellogg ...
Wright Thompson
Otto Waldis ...
Dr. Max A. Bauer
Jim Bannon ...
Andy Ostergaard
Tom Handley ...
Dr. James Paxton
Dick Cogan ...
Dr. George Coleman
George Baxter ...
Carlisle Foundation Chairman
Marilyn Nash ...
Dr. Joan Lindsey


Dr. Jerimiah Morley becomes convinced that the world is headed to an inevitable worldwide nuclear war. He organizes an expedition made up of a team of expert scientists and an atomic-powered rock-boring vehicle called a "cyclotram" to find a subterranean environment where holocaust survivors could live indefinitely. When funding falls through, independently rich adventurer Wright Thompson underwrites the project under the condition that he be allowed to go. As the group goes deeper beneath the Earth's crust, personalities clash, tempers flare, and the dangerous journey claims the lives of several expedition members. When they come upon an enormous underground expanse with its own ocean and phosphorescent light, it appears that their goal has been achieved. Written by Gabe Taverney {

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drilling into the forbidding depths of the earth! See more »


Adventure | Sci-Fi


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

26 October 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Night Without Stars  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


There seems to be some inspiration for this film taken from Jules Verne's "Journey to the Center of the Earth". Both feature an underground sea, in both the entrance to the Earth is close to the top of the Earth (Iceland in Verne's novel and Alaska in this film) and the escape from underground is unexpected and amazingly rapid. See more »


Their ship called the "cyclotram" was supposed to be under 2500 miles of water. That is impossible because the pressure increases 165 time per mile one goes under water. That would mean about 6 million pounds per square inch. No hull could stand anywhere near that pressure. See more »


Dr. Jeremiah Morley: Go back to what? To a world bent on self destruction? We can live the rest of our lives here in peace.
Dr. Joan Lindsey: Morley, you're wrong! This isn't peace! This is a resting place for the living dead! I don't believe it's the end of the world! I don't believe it's the end of mankind!
Dr. Jeremiah Morley: You're young! You don't know! I've lived through the terrors of two great wars! I've had enough!
See more »

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User Reviews

Low-budget and dated but surprisingly good
30 June 1999 | by (Minneapolis) – See all my reviews

A group of scientists drive an enclosed vehicle into an extinct volcano and then bore more than a thousand miles into the earth. They're searching for underground sanctuaries in case the surface of the earth becomes uninhabitable due to nuclear warfare. This is one of those low-budget, black-and-white films from the 50's that you want to laugh at it, and while it does have its share of bad dialog and cheesy special effects, there's an earnest, committed quality here which eventually overcomes most of the obvious faults. Viewers looking for cheap thrills will be disappointed.

16 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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