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On the Beach (1959)
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Steve Joyce
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Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agree the book wasn't so hot:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/736328162?book_show_action=false&from_review_page=1

Depends on my mood concerning the movie.

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Brent Gair
Mission Specialist


Joined: 21 Nov 2014
Posts: 466

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of the unusual things about this movie is the depiction of an end time that comes with relatively calm resignation.

I have a survivalist streak in me which envisages the "end time" with me making a desperate hike to the Manitoba interlake where I attempt to dig a bunker under a granite pluton while pursued by desperate, lawless, gangs of survivors.

The complete breakdown of common decency and humanity is a worn cliche in most of these flicks...and it may well be true (hopefully, we'll never find out). But I'm getting a bit bored with seeing the same scenario.

On the Beach presents a rare, alternate perspective.
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Bogmeister
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Joined: 14 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2019 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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_________________ Trailer 1959 On The Beach


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The big budget effort of the fifties in depicting the aftermath of World War III (all other fifties films in this genre were small low-budget affairs, including The World, The Flesh and the Devil).

In this scenario, the nuclear exchange among the world's powers had already happened a month or so before the story begins. Most of the planet's lifeforms are dead, the exception being those in the extreme southern hemisphere, as in Australia.

But the radioactive fallout is drifting southward and those still alive have about 5 months before it reaches them.

The main character is the commander (Gregory Peck) of the last U.S. nuclear submarine. After a signal is detected in San Diego, his sub is sent on an expedition to find out what's what, including getting data on the fallout. There is no good news in the findings.



Other characters are the commander's new girlfriend (Ava Gardner), a scientist (Fred Astaire) and a young officer (Anthony Perkins).

The film emphasizes the human drama of such a scenario as all hope fades and survivors wait for the inevitable end — now swiftly approaching. The story doesn't fail to mention how death from such exposure is not painless. Since, as mentioned, the characters have been aware of what's coming for some time as the film begins, there is already a grim fatalistic approach by all involved from the start.

Perkins explains to his young wife the use of special pills, both for their baby daughter and herself. Peck is in the strange position of having survived his wife and children; as a military man, he always expected to go before them. He cannot bring himself to get fully involved with Gardner.

There are fine moments among the small supporting parts. Especially effective is the brief stopover off the coast of an empty, silent San Francisco. One of Peck's crew elects to remain there since it's his hometown, even though this guarantees his death in a week or so.

The film has a languorous pace in sections and I found it to be way too slow when I was younger. As an older adult, I can sit back and study this deliberate examination of mankind's self-destructive nature (voiced by Astaire at one point in the one moment of anti-war preaching), the way people react to such a grim prospect and the panorama of a sober, quiet doomsday.

BoG's Score: 7 out of 10


___ Melbourne Becomes A Dead City - On The Beach Filming


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_________________ On The Beach Grand Prix


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BoG
Galaxy Overlord Galactus


Last edited by Bogmeister on Sun May 19, 2019 2:19 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Bud Brewster
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Joined: 14 Dec 2013
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Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2019 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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After posting Bogmeister's review, I read Brent Gair's comment right above it, and I was very impressed. I recommend reading Brent's comments as well as Bogmeister's, if you haven't done so lately.

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