Panic in Year Zero (1962)

January 9th, 2024
Author: Meredith Taylor

Dir: Ray Milland Cast: Ray Milland, Jean Hagen, Mary Mitchel, Frank Avalon US thriller

A remarkably unflattering depiction of the ruthlessness that Americans prided themselves on being capable of during the Cold War (described by Denis Gifford as “Ray Milland’s illustrated handbook on What to Do When the Bomb Falls”) which makes ‘The Turner Diaries’ look like a Fabian Society publication.

In this tale of survival against the odds, a family leaves Los Angeles for a camping trip in the nick of time before a bomb destroys the city. Ray Milland, inspired by a short story from Ward Moore and directing a script from John Morton and Jay Simms, vouchsafes the inconvenient truth that, in the event of an attack by The Enemy, the first people patriotic Americans would turn the guns they’ve been hoarding so lovingly on would be other Americans – and ammunition would be of greater value than money.

The film one again proves the ‘holocaust theory’ in saluting an average working stiff who when his back’s to the wall gets his way by showing a total disregard for no one but himself and his wife and kids, which earns the final admiring tribute of a pair of state troopers as “five more good ones”. @RichardChatten.


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