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22 user 25 critic

No Blade of Grass (1970)

When a deadly virus strikes London, John Custance takes his family to hoped-for safety in Scotland.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Jefferson Pascal) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
John Custance
...
Ann Custance
...
Roger Burnham
...
Mary Custance
...
David Custance
Ruth Kettlewell ...
Fat Woman
M.J. Matthews ...
George
Michael Percival ...
Police Constable
Tex Fuller ...
Mr. Beaseley
Simon Merrick ...
T.V. Interviewer (Fred Gray)
Anthony Sharp ...
Sir Charles Brenner
...
Mr. Sturdevant
Anthony May ...
Pirrie
...
Clara
Max Hartnell ...
Lieutenant
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Storyline

A strange new virus has appeared, which only attacks strains of grasses such as wheat and rice, and the world is descending into famine and chaos. Architect John Custance, along with his family and friends, is making his way from London to his brother's farm in Scotland, where hopefully, there will be food and safety for all of them. Along the way, they encounter hostile soldiers, biker gangs, and all manner of people who are all too willing to take advantage of travelers for a mouthful of food. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net> (edited by TrivWhiz)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

virus | chaos | soldier | biker | farm | See All (161) »

Taglines:

No room to run! No place to hide! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

23 October 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Death of Grass  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to actress Wendy Richard, who played a supporting role: "It came from a brilliant book, but Cornel Wilde, God rest his soul, I don't think he did it justice when it came to the screenplay. He seemed to go over the top and get some bits of egg on his face." See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Radio voice: This is a motion picture. It's not a documentary, but it could be.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 28 Days Later... (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

No Blade Of Grass
By Louis Nelius and Charles Carroll
Sung by Roger Whittaker
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User Reviews

Good story - lousy direction
15 April 2000 | by (Victoria, BC) – See all my reviews

I haven't read the original story, though a friend of mine who watched it with me who had read the book said that this film adaptation was fairly close to what happened in the book.

The story is an intriguing one, and fascinating as to how is constantly seem to show no hope, no promise. There are some powerful scenes here. Unfortunately, director Cornel Wilde was not the right choice here. Yes, he does get some powerful scenes, but there are a number of annoyances. He shows endless shots of polluted rivers, garbage, dead animals, etc. - this isn't really what the story is about! I know there was a big ecology kick going on at the time, but that's no excuse.

Also, there are a number of flash-forwards that spoil events that happen later in the movie. What was the point of ruining these plot turns for us? Couldn't we have been taken by surprise?

Also, some scenes go by at a rapid-fire pace, or seem to have been cut before they completely played out.

So it's not a great film. However, the story is what's interesting, and what will probably make the movie worth watching to viewers, provided they have patience. (If they can find it - it's not on video, unfortunately.) Plus, even though it's a little corny, it'll be hard for me to shake that haunting title song out of my head.


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