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When Worlds Collide (1951)

Approved  |   |  Family, Sci-Fi  |  30 November 1951 (Finland)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 4,879 users  
Reviews: 94 user | 47 critic

As a new star and planet hurtle toward a doomed Earth, a small group of survivalists frantically work to complete the rocket which will take them to their new home.



(screenplay), (novel), 1 more credit »
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Complete credited cast:
Richard Derr ...
Rachel Ames ...
Julie Cummings (as Judith Ames)
Stephen Chase ...
Sandro Giglio ...


David Randall is a carefree ladies man and skilled pilot who finds he has been let in on the greatest and most terrible secret in the world when he is paid to deliver some mysterious pictures from one eminent astronomer to another. The recipient, Dr. Hendron, confirms the awful findings of the sender: the star Bellus will collide with Earth and wipe out all of humanity. Despite widespread disbelief, two philanthropists give Dr. Hendron some of the money he needs to build a rocket ship that will, at least theoretically, take them to Zyra, a planet which is orbiting Bellus which may or may not be habitable for humans. The rest of the money comes from Sydney Stanton, a wheelchair-bound old man, who insists he come along, despite the severe limitations on the number of passengers and amount of cargo. Meanwhile, as doomsday approaches, Randall is surprised to find himself in a love triangle with Dr. Hendron's daughter and her fiancé. Humanity is in peril, and only a modern-day Noah's ark, ... Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Planets destroy earth! See more »


Family | Sci-Fi


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| | |

Release Date:

30 November 1951 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Cuando los mundos chocan  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$936,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


George Pal wanted to film the novel's sequel, "After Worlds Collide," which depicted the struggle of human survivors on the alien planet. However, the failure of his film Conquest of Space (1955) badly damaged his career and the sequel was never made. See more »


When the ship is making its final approach to Zyra, you can see some of the black thread holding the miniature. Also, when the ship finishes skidding on the snow you can see the fishing line that dragged the model across the snow. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: [spoken over a shot of outer space] Needles in a heavenly haystack. There are more stars in the heavens than there are human beings on Earth. Through telescopes men of science constantly search the infinitesimal corners of our solar system seeking new discoveries, hoping to better understand the laws of the Universe. Observatories dedicated to the study of astronomy are set in high and remote places, but there is none more remote than Mt. Kenna Observatory in this part of South ...
See more »


Edited from Spawn of the North (1938) See more »

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User Reviews

Great Sci-Fi For the That Time
19 May 2003 | by (Texas) – See all my reviews

I am partial to older movies such as "When Worlds Collide,"

because the acting and limited technology were more crucial to

making an interesting movie. You have to try to place yourself in

the movie's time period and in the characters' environment before

making judgment.

Having done so, I believe this movie is a "thumbs-up" for carrying

out a lengthy story line in just 86 minutes. The actors all made up

for the absence of modern, computer-generated graphics and

second-class props, by today's standards. And they did a good job

of bringing to life the human problems and issues that would arise

in similar situations if their predicament happened today.

I first saw this movie in 1960 at the age of six. It blew me away

then. And today, I still enjoy watching it, but I have to remind myself

about my previous comments and put myself back in the movie's

time zone.

This is a good Sci-fi movie for its time. Sit back, grab a bucket of

popcorn and a soda, and go back to the early 1950s if you can.

Then let the movie do the rest.

23 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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