Based on the story "See How They Run," which ran in the June 1951 issue of "The Ladies' Home Journal" and subsequently won that year's Christopher Award. The story was written by Mary ... See full summary »
Ralph Burton is a miner who is trapped for several days as a result of a cave-in. When he finally manages to dig himself out, he realizes that all of mankind seems to have been destroyed in a nuclear holocaust. He travels to New York City only to find it deserted. Making a life for himself there, he is flabbergasted to eventually find Sarah Crandall, who also managed to survive. Together, they form a close friendship until the arrival of Benson Thacker who has managed to pilot his small boat into the city's harbor. At this point the tensions rise between the three, particularly between Thacker, who is white and Burton, who is black. Written by
Ralph sets up a top-of-the-line Lionel Super O train set in his apartment. See more »
In his kitchen, Ralph shows Sarah how he's been throwing his dirty dishes out his apartment window because there's no water to wash them with. Sarah simply turns on the faucet and water flows, thanks to the water tower on top of Ralph's building. Ralph should not have been surprised by this, as he should have noticed that his toilet was still working. See more »
I've seen many actors play the "last man on earth," and NO ONE ever played the part as believably as Harry Belafonte. There's his reaction when he's listening to those radio messages ; his shouting at the whole world to come back (I'm paraphrasing this) : "Where did you all go? What did I do?" ; his trying to live alone with the mannequins ; singing to himself ; his reaction when he finds out there's someone else ; his line when Mel Ferrer threatens him : "Is this World War IV ?" And Inger Stevens was extremely good in it, including her big argument with him, telling him she can live alone, with its almost funny little faux pas : "I'm free, white and 21." And Mel Ferrer, whose character (if I'm correct) was more arrogant in a GENERAL way than he was a bigot, seemed very right for that part. People have complained about the faulty science and similar things, but to me, those things pale alongside the actors and characters. One science fiction guidebook had a great line about this "last three people on earth" movie : "Well, at least one of them can sing."
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