6.8/10
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73 user 33 critic

Until the End of the World (1991)

Bis ans Ende der Welt (original title)
In 1999, Claire's life is forever changed after she survives a car crash. She rescues Sam and starts traveling around the world with him. Writer Eugene follows them and writes their story, as a way of recording dreams is being invented.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Claire Tourneur
Pietro Falcone ...
Mario
Enzo Turrin ...
Doctor
Chick Ortega ...
Chico Remy
...
Raymond Monnet
...
Sam Farber, alias Trevor McPhee
Adelle Lutz ...
Makiko
...
Burt
Jean-Charles Dumay ...
Mechanic
...
Eugene Fitzpatrick
Ernest Berk ...
Anton Farber
Christine Oesterlein ...
Irina Farber
...
Diogo Dória ...
Receptionist
Amália Rodrigues ...
Woman in Street Car
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Storyline

Set in 1999, a woman (Dommartin) has a car accident with some bank robbers, who enlist her help to take the bank money to a drop in Paris. On the way she runs into another fugitive from the law (Hurt), an American who is being chased by the CIA. The charges are false, he claims. They want to confiscate a device his father invented which allows anyone to record their dreams and vision. On the run from both the bank robbers and the CIA, the couple span the globe, ending up in Australia at his father's (von Sydow) research facility, where they hope to play back the recordings Hurt captured for his blind mother. Set in the futuristic year of 1999, a subplot about a damaged Indian nuclear satellite crashing and causing the end of civilization is a puzzling addition to the film. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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The Ultimate Road Movie! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sensuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

| | | |

Release Date:

25 December 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Until the End of the World  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$752,856 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(director's cut) | (1991 European cut)

Sound Mix:

| (France)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When filming ended, Wenders confessed, his producers had to literally pull the plug on him for his own good because he wanted to take the film to a conclusion in the African Congo. There, the Pygmies' "dream music" would have brought his characters and themes full circle. As it is, he hit every continent in the film except Africa and South America. See more »

Goofs

When Bert is shown as the guitarist in Chico's impromptu band for the first time, he hands the guitar to the green-shirted man on the bridge while the rest of the band keeps playing. But when the scene cuts to a different angle, Bert is still playing the guitar. See more »

Quotes

Eugene Fitzpatrick: What is this?
Claire Tourneur: Pygmies.
Eugene Fitzpatrick: Pygmies?
See more »


Soundtracks

It Takes Time
Written by Fred 'Sonic' Smith and Patti Smith
Performed by Fred 'Sonic' Smith and Patti Smith
Courtesy of Arista Records, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
A merry, proto-cyberpunk, romp around the world
15 August 2000 | by (Toronto, Canada) – See all my reviews

UNTIL THE END OF THE WORLD (1991) is not like a typical, American science-fiction film. There are no villains or car-chases or explosions (okay, maybe ONE). German director Wim Wenders projected the world 10 years into the future, to 1999. He added only a touch of strangeness, such as cars which speak to the driver and warn of traffic conditions, or videophones (which require people to stay stylish and well-groomed all day in case of an incoming call?)

An Indian nuclear satellite's orbit is decaying, and it may generate an electromagnetic pulse that will wipe out all the world's computer memory. Against this ominous Y2K backdrop, a French party-girl named Claire Tourneur meets two bank-robbers, and the money they confide to her attracts the interest of a hitch-hiker named Trevor McPhee, who takes some and takes off. Trevor attracts the interest of Claire, and from there it's a merry romp around the world as the story crosses nine countries. We discover Trevor's hidden, almost Messianic mission: to give visions to the blind, but not without risk to the characters' minds.

The plot of the story is understated, and there is very little violence except for the emotional violence the characters commit against each other. That makes this film more European than American. Wim Wenders also solicited the collaboration of many pop music artists, asking them for a song like what they would be writing in 10 years' time, making for one of the strongest soundtracks in movie history.

I found that the pace of the film avoided being too languid by the variety of countries and their refreshing sceneries. Wenders carefully crafted his imagery and strongly blended it with sound, albeit the inherent beauty of his film serves to tell a somewhat minimalist story that will nonetheless linger with the viewer.


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