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The Omega Man (1971)

GP | | Action, Sci-Fi | 1 August 1971 (USA)
Army doctor Robert Neville struggles to create a cure for the plague that wiped out most of the human race.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Joyce H. Corrington) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Rosalind Cash ...
Lisa
...
Dutch
Eric Laneuville ...
Richie
...
Zachary
Jill Giraldi ...
Little Girl
Anna Aries ...
Woman in Cemetery Crypt
...
Tommy
DeVeren Bookwalter ...
Family Member (as De Veren Bookwalter)
John Dierkes ...
Family Member
Monika Henreid ...
Family Member
...
Family Member
Forrest Wood ...
Family Member
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Storyline

Due to an experimental vaccine, Dr. Robert Neville is the only survivor of an apocalyptic war waged with biological weapons. The plague caused by the war has killed everyone else except for a few hundred deformed, nocturnal people calling themselves "The Family". The plague has caused them to become sensitive to light, as well as homicidally psychotic. They believe science and technology to be the cause of the war and their punishment, and Neville, as the last symbol of science, the old world, and a "user of the wheel", must die. Neville, using electricity, machinery, and science attempts to hold them at bay. Written by Roald E. Peterson III <slz13@cc.usu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Pray for the last man alive. Because he's not alone. See more »

Genres:

Action | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 August 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I Am Legend  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The production company wanted a locale that looked like an abandoned metropolitan area, but it was too costly to build. The producer drove through Downtown Los Angeles one weekend and discovered there were no shoppers, so the majority of the film's exteriors were shot there on weekends. See more »

Goofs

In the film's very first shot, Neville drives the red convertible down the street & turns right. If you watch carefully through the credits (after he fires on the Family member), you will see that he turns right again at this exact same route/street corner twice more from different camera angles, for a total of three turns. You can triangulate the shots by noting surrounding parked cars (specifically small pickup RVs) and the streets behind the car as he drives. Neville is driving in circles or continuity error. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[the last man on earth wrecks his car]
Robert Neville: There's never a cop around when you need one.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a 2-minute cold open with no logos or credits. The Warner Bros. logo comes on at the two-minute mark, followed by the opening credits. See more »


Soundtracks

All Through The Night
Written by Cole Porter
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Flawed Wonderland
1 January 2005 | by (Fort Collins, Colorado) – See all my reviews

A film that can't help but aim too high, "The Omega Man" suffers from the very thing that makes it great. Set in a post-apocalyptic future (for the audience of 1971) the film attempts to show a world populated by a single solitary man. Well, a man and a cult of malcontented zombie/mutant/vampire beings. Robert Neville (Heston) is the lone survivor of a germ war that turned the population of the world into freaks. Based on the amazingly brilliant book "I Am Legend" by Richard Matheson, the film shares most of the qualities of the book, yet excludes the portions that make "Legend" fantastic.

The idea of being the last man is intriguing. I used to fantasize about being Neville as a child (probably not the healthiest thing for a kid). Neville has paradise, but with the highest price possible. He can have anything he wants, but no one to share it with. And come night time, he must hide in his fortress away from the angry mob of mutants.

The apocalyptic world that makes the first half so captivating is destroyed by the second half's plot device. I won't go into details for those who haven't seen it. However, I will say the film starts to slide downhill from the mid-way point. But the lesser parts can be enjoyed as early 70's camp.

Even with its faults, "The Omega Man" is a great Sci-fi movie. It also gives Heston a chance to play his quintessential role of a man at the end of civilization. The film's weaknesses don't ruin the experience entirely. It is a film that myself and my friends talk about to this day despite the fact that most of my friends only saw it once or twice (when forced by me).

Related note: I Am Legend was also made into the film "The Last Man on Earth" starring Vincent Price. "Omega Man" is discussed in the first scene of indie-film classic "Slacker."


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