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Panic in the City (1968)

Approved | | Sci-Fi, Thriller | February 1968 (USA)
An American agent is assigned to track down a renegade Soviet spy who is building an atomic device in Los Angeles and plans to destroy the city with it.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Paula Stevens
James Kincade
August Best
Myra Pryor
Dr. Paul Cerbo (as Oscar Beregi)
Gregory Morton ...
Dr. Milton Becker
Hal Johnson
Police Lt. Brady
Jim Adams ...
Hank Brandt ...


When a man collapses on the street, he is brought to the hospital and when he was about to be x-rayed, the technician discovers that he is contaminated with radiation. A federal agent arrives to find out how he got infected. They learn that he is a scientist. But before he could be questioned he's killed. So they have to find out what's going on. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THE MOST TERRIFYING THREAT OF OUR TIMES! (original poster-all caps) See more »


Sci-Fi | Thriller


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

February 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dødsdom over Los Angeles  »

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Final theatrical feature of Anne Jeffreys. See more »


Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Decent Atomic Showdown in this Eurospy vs FBI Thriller
26 January 2011 | by See all my reviews

When a European scientist working in the US falls, nearly dead, on the street from radiation poisoning, FBI agent Dave Pomeroy (Howard Duff) is given the task of tracking down the source of the radiation. Before he gets a chance to question the dying man, he finds that he has been murdered in his hospital bed by a hired assassin (Dennis Hopper).

The assassin was hired by August Best (Nehemiah Persoff), the leader of a cell from a secret cabal of European spies who have infiltrated various institutions in the US. The leader is a mad scientist Dr. Strangelove type character who has mutinied his cell and started to assemble a Nuclear Bomb in the basement of a home in a suburb of Los Angeles, with plans on blowing it up in a major US city.

He has blackmailed another member of the cabal, Dr. Cerbo (Oscar Beregi Jr)- a Nuclear Scientist- into assembling the bomb. All while Pomeroy and the FBI are hot on the case of tracking them down, though seemingly always a few minutes behind...

This doomsday thriller/mystery is spun together with a love story, between Pomeroy and the sexy Dr Paula Stevens (Linda Cristal), a radiologist from the hospital.(y'know...for the ladies) What at first begins as a utilitarian relationship quickly develops into something deeper as the film progresses.

When Best's handler denounces his insane plot and tells him the cabal's plans to place him under arrest, he goes nuts, killing his handler and running off to put his scheme into action. He forces Cerbo to quickly finish and initiate the bomb. As the the fission reaction begins, Best shoots Cerbo, only to be shot by Pomeroy, who finally manages to track them down via FBI cunning, seconds later....but it's too late...the reaction has begun and it is only a matter of time before it explodes...will Pomeroy be able to stop the bomb from exploding as people watch from their front lawns and windows? or will his efforts be in vain...?

A decent, not great, but solid enough Euro Spy vs FBI pre-apocalyptic thriller from the height of cold war era tensions. While the finale is pretty bizarre and will probably have you laughing...i'd say it is definitely worth a watch, though the quality of the DVD is poor- like a bad VHS transfer to DVD from the late 90s.

The film has very nice framing and mise en scene from director Eddie Davis, nothing overly symbolic but at least it is visually appealing. As far as I'm concerned, it's worth it alone for Dennis Hopper's cameo, the 60's bathing suits, and the hilarious finale. 7 out of 10 cause I love this kinda stuff. It's good for what it is.

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