An alien agent from the distant planet Davana is sent to Earth via a high-tech matter transporter. There, he terrorizes Southern California in an attempt to acquire blood for his dying race, the result of a devastating nuclear war.
After a boiler explosion aboard an aging ocean liner, a man struggles to free his injured wife from the wreckage of their cabin and ensure the safety of their four-year-old daughter as the ship begins to sink.
Andrew L. Stone
While on a fishing trip, Harry Baldwin (Ray Milland) and his family hear an explosion and realize that Los Angeles has been leveled by a nuclear attack. Looters and killers are everywhere. Escaping to the hills with his family, he sets about the business of surviving in a world where, he knows, the old ideals of humanity will be first casualties. Not one to give up, he holds up a store for supplies and hides the family in a cave. Written by
This film inspired the Steely Dan song 'King of the World' on their second album 'Countdown to Ecstacy.' Donald Fagen of the band referred to this in interview. See more »
The buck didn't stop here: Rick (Frankie Avalon) shoots a buck and carries it on his back up to where his father (Ray Milland) is standing. Rick lets the buck drop off his back, and it hits the ground and rolls behind him, until it disappears off screen. Camera angle switches to a close-up of Rick and his father talking. Then there's a wider camera shot as both father and son turn to look at the buck, but the buck is now lying on the ground almost right next to Rick. See more »
Ray Milland's forgotten post-Apocalyptic directorial effort Panic in Year Zero! takes a surprisingly sober and convincing look at the possible effects of an unexpected nuclear attack on the survivors. Confusion and denial gradually give way to a determination to survive at any price, as Milland's family everyman, so busy looking for the darkness in others he doesn't see it in himself, takes charge with a coldly logical determination to put his family first that naturally leads to cold-blooded murder. Yet he's not a maniacal stereotype: he genuinely thinks he's helping society survive by separating himself from it and keeping any other survivors at gunpoint, insisting "The law will be back. I just want us to survive until it does" as he moves further from it and what's left of civilisation.
Being a low-budget AIP movie, the action is confined to the hills and mountain roads, but it's an effective and fairly unsensationalized look at the All-American post-nuclear family. Curiously the film's original trailer shows it may have been darker still, with deleted footage of one of the film's female victims all too eager to kill her tormentors, one of whom is seen sniffing her clothing while impassively watching an attack the film itself is rather more subtle!
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