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Deathquake (1980)

Jishin rettô (original title)
A large earthquake hits Tokyo, which was predicted by a seismologist but was ignored.


Kenjirô Ohmori


Kaneto Shindô




Cast overview, first billed only:
Hiroshi Katsuno Hiroshi Katsuno ... Yoichi Kawazu
Toshiyuki Nagashima ... Masayuki Hashizume (reporter)
Yumi Takigawa Yumi Takigawa ... Tomiko Ashida (earthquake research institute employee)
Kayo Matsuo ... Yûko Kawazu (Yôichi's wife)
Chiaki Matsubara ... Kazue Umejima (camerawoman)
Hideji Ôtaki Hideji Ôtaki
Eiji Okada
Kei Satô ... Chief Cabinet Secretary
Tatsuo Matsumura ... Kôzô Ashida (Tomiko's father)
Shin Saburi
Norihei Miki
Sachiko Murase ... Fusae Kawazu (Yûko's mother)
Tsutomu Yamazaki ... Director General of Meteorological Agency
Yûsuke Takita Yûsuke Takita ... Middle-Aged Salaryman
Toshie Kobayashi Toshie Kobayashi ... Middle-Aged Woman


Seizmologist Hoichi loses touch with his family when he predicts that there will be an earthquake in Tokyo of greater magnitude than the one in 1923, which his father predicted. Because of this he starts seeing another woman, who already has a boyfriend. Hoichi's wife wants to meet her before she will grant a divorce. Eventually, the earthquake he predicted does come, which changes all relationships and exemplifies the character of the Japanese. Written by Scott Hutchins <scottandrewh@home.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Even God cannot stop it. See more »


Action | Drama | Sci-Fi


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Did You Know?


The film was a follow-up to a TV movie from early the same year, Tokyo Daijishin Magnitude 8.1 (1980), starring Shin'ichi Chiba, with special effects by Kôichi Kawakita, and also produced by Toho. See more »

Crazy Credits

Although the title is at the beginning, all of the credits are at the end of the movie (in the original Japanese version). See more »

Alternate Versions

In all versions of the film, the title is shown early in the film (in the shot of the crater of Mount Mihara), but in the original Japanese version, all of the credits are at the end of the film; after the final freeze-frame of Kayo Matsuo's character (Yuko Kawazu), the film fades out, and a credit roll in white text over a black background is set to the sentimental pop song "Amethyst Sunray" (performed by Hatsumi Shibata), ending with a "The End" ("Owari") credit. In all international versions, the cast credits are placed over the opening footage of Oshima Island (before the title), and the rest of the credits over the aerial montage of Tokyo (right after the film's title), both originally credit-less, and the film ends with the final freeze-frame of Matsuo's character (with "The End" and the Toho copyright superimposed over the shot). "Amethyst Sunray" is omitted altogether. See more »


References Meteor (1979) See more »


Amethyst Sunray
("Amejisuto Sanrei")
(Closing credits theme - Japanese version only)
Composed by Masaaki Hirao
Lyrics by Makoto Kitajô
Arranged by Tatsumi Yano
Performed by Hatsumi Shibata
See more »

User Reviews

Earthquake 7.9
2 December 2008 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Earthquake 7.9 (1980)

** (out of 4)

Japanese disaster film that not only rips off Earthquake but also mixes in some The Towering Inferno and The Poseidon Adventure. The film tells the story of a young scientist who believes an earthquake will hit Tokyo by the end of the month yet no one believes him. Sure enough a massive earthquake hits and levels the city to pure rubble that the city hasn't seen since it was last attacked by Godzilla. I watched the American version of this film, which is cut by nearly thirty-minutes but from what I've read the only thing edited out are dialogue scenes at the start of the film. I must admit that I'm thankful I watched this cut version as the dialogue scenes at the start of the film are just downright dreadful and I can only imagine how much worse they would have been with a half hour more. These early build up scenes are horrid in just about any disaster movie no matter if they're from America, Italy or Japan but the ones here are just downright incredible in their badness. The worst thing is the music score, which starts to thunder and pound whenever something "dramatic" happens. This is so annoying that at times I was hoping a real earthquake would hit my town so that I could stop the movie. The second half of the film is actually a lot better but in a campy fashion. The earthquake sequences are poorly done and features some bad special effects but if you've seen any of the Toho Godzilla films with their cardboard cities being destroyed then you should know what to expect. The effects are just as bad here with the worst (or most laughable) scene coming when an airplane is trying to land but ends up breaking apart. The story of our hero having to take charge of a group of people is just as silly but it makes for a few good laughs including a sequence ripped off from The Poseidon Adventure where we get an underwater swim. Fans of disaster movies might want to check this out just to see what other countries were doing but I seriously doubt too many are going to get any entertainment out of this unless they're fans of camp.

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Release Date:

5 February 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Earthquake 7.9 See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Toho Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (US)

Sound Mix:

Mono | 4-Track Stereo (Japan theatrical release)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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