The End of the World (1916)

  |  Drama, Sci-Fi


The End of the World (1916) Poster

A comet, passing by Earth, causes rioting, social unrest, and major disasters that destroy the world.


6.5/10
284

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28 December 2006 | boblipton
7
| The world is ending. How can we profit from it?
This Danish feature about a comet that destroys northwest Europe, leaving only a single man and a woman who meet in a church, is beautifully photographed, with many lovely shots and a fluid camera. Of course, the capitalists try to make extra money out of the panic, and of course the lower classes -- as exemplified by the common folks in a mining town -- break into the home of the wealthy capitalist the evening the comet hits in order to gain vengeance, interrupting a ballet in the process. All this is standard stuff for the better sf of the era: Wells, Verne and so forth.

I have some issues with the way it is cut. Since the actors don't really play people, but types, they do not give terribly interesting performances. Also, the direction is, even for the era, slow: people are shown holding conversations that we never hear.

To understand the success of this movie, the modern viewer must recall that the First World War had been raging to the south of Denmark for twenty months when it was released. This is not a work of fiction so much as a parable, to eschew worldly things, and to seek God, for all worldly things will be destroyed. Including people.

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Drama | Sci-Fi

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