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The Last Man on Earth (1964)

Not Rated | | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi | 6 May 1964 (USA)
When a disease turns all of humanity into the living dead, the last man on earth becomes a reluctant vampire hunter.

Directors:

Ubaldo Ragona (as Ubaldo B. Ragona), Sidney Salkow

Writers:

Richard Matheson (screenplay) (as Logan Swanson), William F. Leicester (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Vincent Price ... Dr. Robert Morgan
Franca Bettoia ... Ruth Collins
Emma Danieli Emma Danieli ... Virginia Morgan
Giacomo Rossi Stuart ... Ben Cortman (as Giacomo Rossi-Stuart)
Umberto Raho ... Dr. Mercer (as Umberto Rau)
Christi Courtland Christi Courtland ... Kathy Morgan
Antonio Corevi Antonio Corevi ... Governor (as Tony Corevi)
Ettore Ribotta Ettore Ribotta ... TV Reporter (as Hector Ribotta)
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Storyline

When a plague devastated life on Earth, the population died or became a sort of zombie living in the dark. Dr. Robert Morgan is the unique healthy survivor on the planet, having a routine life for his own survival: he kills the night creatures along the day and maintains the safety of his house, to be protected along the night. He misses his beloved wife and daughter, consumed by the outbreak, and he fights against his loneliness to maintain mentally sane. When Dr. Morgan finds the contaminated Ruth Collins, he uses his blood to heal her and he becomes the last hope on Earth to help the other contaminated survivors. But the order of this new society is scary. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Alive among the lifeless... alone among the crawling creatures of evil that make the night hideous with their inhuman craving! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite being regarded as the most faithful version to the novel, there are some noticeable differences. For example: "The Last Man on Earth" (1964) depicts the vampires as that of slow-moving and uncoordinated. In the novel, the vampires were fast and agile. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning, when Morgan goes out searching for corpses to incinerate, after he puts a man and a woman into the back of his car, it is possible to see the two actors moving themselves to settle down in the back of the car. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Robert Morgan: Another day to live through. Better get started.
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Alternate Versions

The 2008 DVD release by Ripley's Home Video in Italy restores not only the mother-with-crying-baby shots from the end scene of the film (as in the US MGM release), but also two lengthy sequences earlier in the film. The first is a flashback scene where Virginia consoles a tearful Morgan after the funeral of their daughter Kathy, while the second is a conversation between Morgan and Ruth after her she has changed into some of Virginia's clothes. Both scenes reinforce Morgan's utter devotion to his deceased wife and help to clarify his descent from a lively and vibrant family man to the grim loner, himself only one step away from the living dead. See more »

User Reviews

 
Amazing film! The apocalypse rarely felt this real.
5 December 2004 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

I never read Richard Matheson's novel 'I am Legend' but I'm particularly intrigued by (science fiction) movies with an apocalyptic theme. And this adaptation simply is one of the most fascinating stories of an already brilliant decade for this type of films. Much more than a grim horror film, this is a gripping drama with an excellent (as always) Vincent Price as the sole and devastated survivor of a deadly plague that exterminated the entire human race, including his own wife and daughter. Price is Dr. Robert Morgan and due to his immunity to the lethal germs, he's the only one to fight victims who return in the shape of vampire/zombie-like creatures. Even though it has already been 3 years, Morgan desperately continues his search for other survivors…This is one of the most impressive performances Price ever gave away, and a lot more difficult than his usual roles of villains and madmen. Judging by today's standards, I guess the film looks very dated and you can't really refer to the tame 'vamp-zombies' as threatening anymore. But the empty streets and depressing cities, shot in unsettling black and white, still are the ultimate in eeriness! I love it when a film makes you feel miserable and worried…and the lower the budget is, the more efficient this effect is reached!

Like several of my fellow-reviewers already pointed out, this also was an immensely influential film. You can't watch 'Last man on Earth' without being reminded of George A. Romero's milestone genre film 'Night of the Living Dead'. If you then realize this movie was made 4 years before Romero's classic, you can't but reckon the underrated brilliance of this film. The same hopelessness-aspect that made Romero's film so tense features HERE first, in 'Last Man on Earth'! This production offers an ideal proportion of frights and sentiments, luckily without too many tedious scientific speeches or faked drama. 'Last Man on Earth' has to be seen by every SF/horror fan on this planet. For some reason this is one of the most underrated genre efforts ever, and that urgently has to change.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

Italy | USA

Language:

Italian | English

Release Date:

6 May 1964 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Damned Walk at Midnight See more »

Filming Locations:

Lazio, Italy See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$300,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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