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Short Walk to Daylight (1972)

Eight people are trapped in a New York City subway after an earthquake, and try to find their way out.


Barry Shear


Philip H. Reisman Jr. (teleplay), Gerald Di Pego (teleplay) (as Gerald DiPego) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »




Cast overview:
James Brolin ... Tom Phelan
Don Mitchell ... Alvin
James McEachin ... Ed
Abbey Lincoln ... Dorella
Brooke Bundy ... Joanne
Lázaro Pérez Lázaro Pérez ... Jax (as Lazaro Perez)
Suzanne Charny Suzanne Charny ... Sylvia
Laurette Spang ... Sandy
Franklin Cover ... Conductor


Eight people are trapped in a New York City subway after an earthquake, and try to find their way out.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A subway ride. A sudden earthquake. And now, disaster and death stand between seven strangers and a ... 'Short Walk To Daylight'









Release Date:

24 October 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Night the Earth Shook See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


All station scenes were filmed at the IND Court St. station in Brooklyn, which as of 1976 houses the New York Transit Museum. See more »


Referenced in Daylight (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

another viewer with fond memories
20 October 2003 | by AronnaxSee all my reviews

Like a few other comments here, I too saw this as a ten year old when it first aired as a TV movie of the week. I think it was right after the Poseidon Adventure came out and I was on my disaster movie kick. But I really loved this one. I remember being riveted to the TV, the hot, steamy subway at night and the dark, moody sets and effects. From what I remember there was an earthquake in Manhattan, and the implication was there wasn't much for them to escape to once they got out.

That's why I hated the longer version that was released a few years later. They explained it all away as a terrorist explosion or something. It was all padding, probably to fill a 2 hour slot (just like that awful Debra Lee Scott padding they added to Earthquake for its TV airing.)

I would also love to see this again. Or maybe not... maybe it would ruin the memories.

FYI: another fun TV movie from this era was Terror At 30,000 Feet, with William Shatner as 747 pilot and his demonic cargo.

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