Tuesday, February 13, 2024

A Film Made in 1962 That Holds Up Well Today

Panic in Year Zero.  Directed by and starting Ray Milland and surprisingly a fine performance by Frankie Avalon as well.

It is available on YouTube where all 10 segments are seamlessly visible.  Amazon seems to have a colorized version available.

Short non-spoiler synopsis.  A family leaves L.A. early in the morning for a camping trip towing a trailer.  Things go flash, bang, boom once they are at a safe distance but they do not know what that means at first.

From them on, it is a SHTF exercise.  There is a restrained hint that some thugs have either raped their daughter or got close.  The other young lady is more obviously been a prolonged victim of these same thugs a bit later in the film.

There are some thoughtful observations that civilization is a very thin veneer but it is made clear that this is a temporary disaster.  When the son shoots one of the bad guys, the father lectures him that this is something he should hate having to do.  That law will reappear and we should not let ourselves be reduced to a savage state.

Shocking discovery: I just assumed that he was an American.  He has always played such unambiguously American roles.  He was born in Wales.

1 comment:

  1. My favorite movie of the genre - especially since I remember many of the visuals (the traffic jam on the freeway, Ojai)...