7.2/10
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The Day the Earth Caught Fire (1961)

Unrated | | Drama, Sci-Fi, Romance | May 1962 (USA)
When the U.S. and Russia unwittingly test atomic bombs at the same time, it alters the nutation (axis of rotation) of the Earth.

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(written for the screen by), (written for the screen by)
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Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Jeannie Craig
... Bill Maguire
... Peter Stenning
... 'Jacko' Jackson - Night Editor
Bernard Braden ... 'Dave' Davis - News Editor
Reginald Beckwith ... Harry
Gene Anderson ... May
... Angela
Arthur Christiansen ... 'Jeff' Jefferson - Editor
... Sir John Kelly
Edward Underdown ... Dick Sanderson
Ian Ellis ... Michael Stenning
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Storyline

Hysterical panic has engulfed the world after the United States and the Soviet Union simultaneously detonate nuclear devices causing a change to the nutation (axis of rotation) of the Earth. Written by Fernando <diamond@argenet.com.ar>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Never leave atomic bombs where children can reach them. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Romance

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

May 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Day the Earth Caught Fire  »

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Box Office

Budget:

£200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(with tinted sequences)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the early 1990s Val Guest was attached to a mooted remake, to be set in New York City, though the plans fell ultimately through. See more »

Goofs

In the film, two simultaneous nuclear explosions tilt the Earth's axis and change its orbit trajectory. The Earth is in fact far too massive to be moved appreciably by any man-made explosion. See more »

Quotes

Peter Stenning: Anything you can split I can split better!
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no end credits whatsoever (not even a "The End" caption); merely a fade to black. See more »

Connections

References Annie Get Your Gun (1950) See more »

Soundtracks

Light Cavalry Overture
(uncredited)
Written by Franz von Suppé
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User Reviews

 
Ambiguous Conclusion
30 May 2018 | by See all my reviews

After the explosion of nuclear bombs by the United States and the Soviet Unions, the weather in London and in the rest of the world changes. The Daily Express alcoholic reporter Peter Stenning (Edward Judd) meets the telephonist Jeannie Craig (Janet Munro), they fall in love with each other and have a love affair. When Jeannie overhears a conversation, they learn that the explosions have altered by 11 degrees the Earth nutation, changing its orbit. Now the only chance to mankind is to explode bombs again so that the rotation shaft returns to its position. Will Earth be saved or doomed?

"The Day the Earth Caught Fire" is a disaster movie with an interesting storyline and an ambiguous conclusion. Peter Stenning is a non-likable character and his behavior betraying his girlfriend is the weakest part of the story. The conclusion with the newspaper showing two front pages written "World Saved" and "World Doomed" is fantastic. My vote is six.

Title (Brazil): "O Dia em Que a Terra se Incendiou" ("The Day the Earth Caught Fire")


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