The Big One: The Great Los Angeles Earthquake (1990)

TV Movie  |  Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  11 November 1990 (USA)
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After a series of small tremors in Los Angeles, Dr. Clare Winslow, a local seismologist, pinpoints the exact location and time of when the long awaited earthquake--"The Big One"--will ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Clare Winslow
Steve Winslow
Anita Parker
Laurie Parker
Chad Spaulding
Heather Winslow
David Motubu
Stephen Elliott ...
Warren Cates
Roy Bryant
Silvana Gallardo ...
Larry, the Mayor's City Official Aide
Charles Siebert ...
Mayor Frank Baldwin
Ray Goodrich


After a series of small tremors in Los Angeles, Dr. Clare Winslow, a local seismologist, pinpoints the exact location and time of when the long awaited earthquake--"The Big One"--will strike southern California. With this information, she must battle city officials to release this information to the general public. Also, she hopes that her family is out of harms way when the quake strikes. Subplots show how other families and people cope with the the tremors that strike before the impending "Big One." Written by John R. Price <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


This is not a true story... yet. See more »




Not Rated




Release Date:

11 November 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Great Los Angeles Earthquake  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(video) | (original) | (3 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Following the final scene, a list of US cities threatened by earthquakes is shown. "According to the US Geological Survey, at least 39 states other than California are expected to experience major earthquakes in the future" Some of the cities that will be hardest hit include: Anchorage 9.2 Boston 6.5 Charleston 8.0 Memphis 8.0 New York City 6.5 Portland 9.0 Reno 7.0 St Louis 8.0 Salt Lake City 7.0 Seattle 9.0 "No city is currently as prepared as the city of Los Angeles." See more »


Daniel Motubu is introduced as a potential candidate for Prime Minister of South Africa. That position was abolished in 1984. See more »


Todd Harris: Last lines Kevin Conrad? Kevin Conrad? This is Tom Harris? Can you hear me? I'm sorry. It seems we have lost our connection with Los Angeles.
See more »


Edited into Category 6: Day of Destruction (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

13 February 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

First off let me say that this one has more ups than downs, and it's better than you're average disaster movie,, first the ups,, the fact that big money plays a part in this film,, you have real estate moguls,, the mayor,, all wanting to hush up the story of "The Big One" for political interests, except for the governor. i liked the ending,, that's always a plus. great acting for the most part,, ed begley jr.. dan lauria, jo anna kerns,, all great actors, and actresses, some of the downs are it takes to long to get going,, to much character development,, and why the heck was there this lame assassination plot,, that had absolutely nothing to do with the story,, and after the big one hits,, the assassination continues,, that took balls, but i kinda liked that,, the plot was very good i thought, the peoples reaction to the big one, and how the media perceives things and "can" twist things is very real,, this movie took some raw facts and shown us that, most disaster movies don't really do that,, you had a great ensemble cast that deserves kudos,,

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