Best Movies by Farr
On the Beach Poster
Released Runtime Category
1959 134 Drama
Director Language
Stanley Kramer English
Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, Fred Astaire, Anthony Perkins, Donna Anderson, John Tate

On the Beach

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What's it About

After learning that a nuclear holocaust has wiped out most of humanity, U.S.S. Sawfish sub commander Capt. Dwight Towers (Peck) finds a group of survivors near Melbourne, including lovely Moira (Gardner), guilt-ridden scientist Julian Osborn (Astaire), and newlyweds Peter (Perkins) and Mary Holmes (Anderson). Knowing that slowly creeping radiation from the northern hemisphere will eventually kill them all, each deals with the impending doom in their own way.

Why we love it

A stark wake-up-call in its time, Kramer'’s blunt, unswervingly bleak doomsday classic was based on a popular novel by Nevil Shute and premiered in major cities around the world on the same day in 1959. Though hardly subtle, "“On the Beach"” does boast fine performances by Peck, Gardner, a young Perkins, and Astaire in his first purely dramatic role, playing wildly (and confidently) against type as an intellectual with a heavy conscience.

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BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"