Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, December 31, 2015


Kieron Moore and Janette Scott
CRACK IN THE WORLD (1965). Director: Andrew Marton.

Dr. Stephen Sorenson (Dana Andrews) and his team have developed a way to bring magma to the surface for a variety of energy needs, but an atomic bomb must be shot down into the core for it to work. Dr. Ted Rampion (Kieron Moore) is opposed to the idea, sure that it will cause massive earthquakes and severe structural damage to the earth. Guess who's right? A fissure is formed in the Mercedo trench which threatens to stretch at 3.5. miles an hour and could literally tear the world apart. Complicating matters is the fact that Rampion used to be the lover of Sorenson's wife, Maggie (Janette Scott), herself a scientist. Crack in the World sets up an exciting premise but has too low a budget to do it justice, relying on stock footage and only really coming alive in the final few moments. The performances are fine, however, with the under-rated Dana Andrews [Where the Sidewalk Ends] giving another good account of himself, and Moore [Satellite in the Sky] and Scott [Paranoiac] on top of things. Alexander Knox is also fine as Sir Charles Eggerston, who heads the committee that determines whether or not the rocket should be fired. Most of the film's excitement comes from the score by John Douglas. The love triangle business isn't especially convincing.

Verdict: An early disaster film that didn't start a trend. **1/2.

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