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The World, the Flesh and the Devil (1959)

 -  Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi  -  20 May 1959 (USA)
7.0
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Reviews: 35 user | 14 critic

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... See full summary »

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Title: The World, the Flesh and the Devil (1959)

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Storyline

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 garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

trapped | miner | cave in | harbor | boat | See more »

Taglines:

The Most Unusual Story Ever Told!

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi

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Release Date:

20 May 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The End of the World  »

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Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To film the striking images of a deserted New York City, the cast and crew had to start filming at dawn in order to capture the city before the early morning rush. This gave them no more than an hour or two per day in which to film the sequence. See more »

Goofs

After Ralph comes ashore in lower Manhattan, amid scenes of him wandering around the vicinity of Wall Street, a shot looking up at him from street level shows the Empire State Building towering above him. The Empire State Building is approximately five miles north of where Ralph had been shown standing. See more »

Quotes

Benson Thacker: I have nothing against negroes, Ralph.
Ralph Burton: That's white of you.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in I Am Legend (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

GOTTA TRAVEL ON
Written by Paul Clayton, Larry Ehrlich, David Lazar, and Tom Six
Sung by Harry Belafonte
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
What Kind Of Culture Will They Establish?
21 January 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Harry Belafonte is a coal miner trapped in a cave-in. He hears the drilling of the rescue crew which abruptly stops. Belafonte claws his own way to the surface and finds everything abandoned. I mean really abandoned. An Armageddon has occurred when some nation decided to forego the bomb and all that destruction and just use the radioactive byproducts. It gets out of control and wipes out everybody.

Well, almost everybody. Harry hot wires a car and travels to New York City in search of life in the largest population center. After a while he finds it in Inger Stevens. It looks like another Adam and Eve ready to begin again when Mel Ferrer also shows up. By that time Belafonte has established some kind of contact with some unknown foreign survivors somewhere in the post apocalypse world?

Of course with two men, two races, and only one woman, things start to look like business as usual for mankind. I was reminded of Neil Patrick Harris's line from Starship Troopers about how we're in it for the species. Will all three of them and anyone else they contact decide we're in it for the species in The World, the Flesh and the Devil?

Director Ranald McDougall got three good performances out of his small cast. The World, The Flesh And The Devil does ask some thought provoking questions as to whether man is capable of screwing up once again. What kind of culture will they establish and will a Supreme Creator/Deity need to intervene?


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