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By Dawn's Early Light (1990)

The crew of a nuclear bomber attack the Soviet Union while the President of the United States tries desperately to regain control of his military after his helicopter crashes during a ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (teleplay)
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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Cassidy
... Moreau (as Rebecca DeMornay)
... Alice
... President
... Condor
... Colonel Fargo
... Harpoon
... Sedgwick
... Tyler
... Hooker
... Radnor
... General Renning - 'Icarus'
... Looking Glass Colonel - 'Sam'
Randal Patrick ... O'Toole
... Bascombe
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Storyline

The crew of a nuclear bomber attack the Soviet Union while the President of the United States tries desperately to regain control of his military after his helicopter crashes during a limited nuclear exchange in this film with a scenario similar to Fail-Safe (1964) and Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964). Originally a made for cable movie, it concentrates on the relationship between a veteran pilot and his female co-pilot and the president's attempt to wrest control away from a war-mongering successor. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Four People. Three Minutes. Two Choices. One Chance For Survival.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller | Action

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Matte World Digital

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Grand Tour  »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Final film to depict a fictional World War III prior to the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics aka the Soviet Union aka Russia). The Matte World Digital websites states: "By Dawn's Early Light (1990), produced in the 1980's, was the last of the 'what if the weapons get loose' cold war suspense thrillers released before the fall of the Soviet Union." See more »

Goofs

In the cast credits, the character that reads "Lt Hooker" should read "Sgt Hooker"? After Maj O'Toole's death, Maj Cassidy tells Sgt Hooker that he has just received the first battlefield commission of this war, which means he is now a Second Lieutenant. See more »

Quotes

Fargo: Hell, most Soviet bombers are so old they still use propellers. The Minnesota Air National Guard could probably knock them down.
Harpoon: Well, do you want to get on the phone and order them into the air, Colonel, because every transistor in Minnesota is BURNED OUT!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sledstvie veli...: Besy (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

DON'T CALL HIM A COWBOY
Written by Debbie Hupp, Johnny MacRae and Bob Morrison
Performed by Conway Twitty
Courtesy Warner Bros. Records Inc.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products, Music City Music Inc.
(administered by EMI April Music Inc) and Southern Days Music (administered by CMI)
See more »

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User Reviews

Top notch nuclear thriller.
7 April 1999 | by See all my reviews

There have been many global nuclear war stories, and this is not the best, but I've always loved this film.

It's a combination of cast and perspective. Whereas most films have a single strong storyline, and maybe a couple of smaller sub plots, this film bypasses that usual structure, preferring instead to use 3 or 4 main plotlines, all moving forward, all converging on the same point. Good non-traditional approach managed by a great non-traditional director, Jack Shoulder (The Hidden).

And for a film that did not go to theatres, this one has a strong cast: Powers Booth teams with Rebecca DeMornay to fly the nuclear bomber. James Earl Jones and Jeffrey DeMunn battle Darren McGavin and Rip Torn as they try to overthrow our world during the ensuing panic. And Martin Landau as the Prez trying to keep it all together.

Nice story, good pace, strong finish. I like it.


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