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The Day After (1983)

TV Movie  |  Unrated  |   |  Drama, Sci-Fi  |  20 November 1983 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 10,064 users  
Reviews: 157 user | 27 critic

A graphic, disturbing film about the effects of a devastating nuclear holocaust on small-town residents of eastern Kansas.



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Title: The Day After (TV Movie 1983)

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Won 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 4 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Stephen Klein (as Steven Guttenberg)
Jim Dahlberg
Lori Lethin ...
Calvin Jung ...
Clayton Day ...


The frightening story of the weeks leading up to and following a nuclear strike on the United States. The bulk of the activity centers around the town of Lawrence, Kansas. Written by Anthony Ventarola <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Beyond Imagining... See more »


Drama | Sci-Fi


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

20 November 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dagen efter  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


SEK 1,953,591 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TV)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The US Department of Defense would only co-operate with the film's production on condition that it be made clear in the story that the Soviets, and not the United States, launched their missiles first. See more »


As Jim Dahlberg helps his daughter, Denise, lie down on the cart, a fly crawls on his hat. The fly should be dead from radiation exposure. See more »


Nurse Nancy Bauer: I think you better have a piece of this orange. Might be the last orange you see for... week and a half.
See more »


Referenced in Vsechnopárty: Episode dated 31 December 2011 (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Appropriately Bleak
26 August 2000 | by (Newington, CT) – See all my reviews

I, like many of my age, saw this when it originally aired as a class assignment. It had a great impact on me, as the cold war was still going strong and the threat of a nuclear war was something that people still thought about. The movie may not be the greatest ever made, but the acting is more than adequate, especially from Jason Robards, and the script was far better than any other movies made for television at that time. I recommend it to anyone, even those with a low tolerance for grossness (radiation sickness is shown in progressive stages, and it is not pretty). It's dark, depressing, and if you get into it you will definitely need to follow it up with a musical or cartoons just to lift your spirits again. Still, the subject matter is not something that can be portrayed positively even at a tv-movie level of realism.

47 of 51 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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The Overwhelming Sense Of Despair Would Prevail After the Bombs freedomfightertjm
I can't believe... AustrianA340
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This movie traumatized me as a child seph82
The Soviets/Elsewhere in the U.S. tlhayden
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