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The End of the World

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“The End of the World” (“The End of the World” in English) is a science fiction film of the subgenus gods disaster movie of 1931 directed by Abel Gance. The film was produced in France and premiered on March 5, 1931.

The film’s plot revolves around the aftermath of a large solar explosion that causes a series of catastrophic events on Earth, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis and solar storms. The story follows a group of characters who try to survive this catastrophe, while the world around them collapses. Among the main characters are Jean, an astronomer who predicted the solar explosion, Geneviève, his fiancée, and Martial, a young artist.

The film was shot with state-of-the-art technology for the time, including innovative special effects to create the cataclysmic events, such as a meteorite fall and solar flare. Also, the film was shot in a widescreen version where certain scenes were shot using three cameras simultaneously to create a panoramic effect.

Despite its technical and visual impact, “The World’s End” was not a major commercial success upon its release and was quickly forgotten. However, in the following years, the film has been re-evaluated and appreciated for its technical innovation and apocalyptic vision. Today, “The End of the World” is considered a seminal work of french cinema and a forerunner of the cataclysmic genre.

Plot

The plot of “The End of the World” revolves around the aftermath of a large solar explosion that causes a series of catastrophic events on Earth. Jean, an astronomer, predicted the solar explosion, but his predictions fell short. When the solar explosion hits the Earth, Jean, his girlfriend Geneviève and a young artist named Martial try to survive the consequences of the catastrophe.

The three protagonists find themselves in Paris during the solar explosion and witness the fall of a meteorite that causes an earthquake. The earthquake damages the public transport system and the three protagonists decide to flee the city. On their journey, they face many hardships, including escaping a volcanic eruption, a gigantic tidal wave, and a solar storm.

While trying to survive, the three protagonists must also face their fate and the meaning of life in a world that is about to end. Geneviève, in particular, seeks solace in religion and belief in a better world after the end of the world.

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Characters

Here are the main characters of the movie “The End of the World”:

Jean: An astronomer who predicted the solar explosion that caused the end of the world. Jean tries to find a way to survive the catastrophe together with his girlfriend Geneviève and the young artist Martial.

Geneviève: Jean’s fiancée. After the end of the world, Geneviève seeks solace in faith and religion.

Martial: A young artist who joins Jean and Geneviève in their escape from the end of the world. Martial is a restless and free spirit, but proves a reliable and courageous ally during the catastrophe.

Professor Broniewski: another astronomer who predicted the solar explosion but who was not listened to. Broniewski dies during the catastrophe.

Madame Lauriane: An elderly woman who seeks refuge with Jean, Geneviève and Martial during their escape from the end of the world.

Robert Lauriane: Mrs. Lauriane’s nephew. Robert joins the protagonists in their escape and becomes a friend of Martial.

Mr. Isidore: a selfish man who tries to save only himself during the catastrophe, endangering the other characters.

Monsieur Seraphin: A man who helps Jean, Geneviève and Martial during their escape from the end of the world. Seraphin helps them find refuge in a church, where they join other survivors.

These are just some of the characters from the movie “The End of the World”. There are also many minor characters that appear throughout the story.

Film Production

“The End of the World” is a 1931 French film directed by Abel Gance. The film was produced by French production company Films Sonores Tobis.

The production of the film was very ambitious for its time, with great attention to detail and special effects. Director Abel Gance has used several innovative techniques to create a unique cinematic experience. For example, he used a filming technique called “Polyvision,” which involved using three cameras to shoot a scene simultaneously, creating a three-screen image. This technique was used in several scenes in the film, including the one depicting the solar explosion.

The film’s cast included notable French actors of the time, including Victor Francen, Abel Jacquin, Colette Darfeuil and Sylvie Grenade.

“The End of the World” was released in France in 1931 and later in other European countries and the United States. The film achieved good success with audiences and critics and is now considered a classic of science fiction cinema of the 1930s.

Distribution and Reception

“The End of the World” was released in France on May 28, 1931, and later also in other European countries and in the United States. The film was well received by French and international critics, who praised its great ambition and innovative technique.

However, the film did not achieve major commercial success and failed to pay off the production costs. This led to the production company cutting some scenes from the film and reducing its original length.

Despite this, “The End of the World” has remained a cult film over the years, and today is considered one of the first examples of science fiction cinema. The film has also been the subject of various re-edits and restorations, including a restored high-definition version in 2012.

In general, the film was praised for its innovative technique and apocalyptic vision, which still make it a point of reference for science fiction cinema today.

Movie Style

“The End of the World” is one of the earliest science fiction cinema history and was made with great attention to detail and special effects. Director Abel Gance used a number of innovative techniques to create a unique cinematic experience, including ‘Polyvision’, which used three cameras to shoot a scene simultaneously, creating a three screen image.

The aesthetics of the film are heavily influenced by artistic movement of futurism, which sought to represent technological progress and the speed of the modern world. This is reflected in the film’s stage design and setting, which feature futuristic buildings, spaceships, aerial vehicles, and other advanced technologies.

The film is also characterized by strong dramatic tension, culminating in the solar explosion sequence, which was made with innovative special effects for the time. Gance uses music and editing to create a feeling of anxiety and angst about the impending apocalypse.

“The End of the World” is a film of great visual and aesthetic impact, which has influenced many other subsequent science fiction films. His innovative and futuristic style made the film a masterpiece of science fiction cinema and a landmark for 1930s cinema.

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Director

Abel Gance was the director of ‘The End of the World’. Born in France in 1889, Gance was an innovative and hugely influential filmmaker in the French film scene of the 1920s and ’30s.

Gance pioneered several cinematic techniques, including “Polyvision,” which he used for “World’s End.” In addition, he experimented with editing, photography and sound, contributing to the creation of a new form of cinematic language.

His most famous film is probably 1927’s ‘Napoleon’, an epic biography of the famous French emperor, which used a number of innovative techniques, including using three screens simultaneously. The film opened to critical acclaim, but found it difficult to find international distribution.

After “The End of the World,” Gance continued to direct successful films, such as 1935’s “Lucrezia Borgia” and 1936’s “Beethoven’s Great Love.” However, with the advent of talkies, Gance found it difficult to maintain his position as an innovator, and his career began to decline.

Gance died in 1981, but his contributions to French and world cinema have been recognized with numerous awards and accolades over the years.

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