The Devil at 4 O'Clock

1961

Adventure / Drama / Thriller

2
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 80% · 5 reviews
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 55% · 500 ratings
IMDb Rating 6.3/10 10 2590 2.6K

Director

Top cast

Kerwin Mathews as Father Joseph Perreau
Frank Sinatra as Harry
Spencer Tracy as Father Matthew Doonan
BarBara Luna as Camille
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
1.13 GB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
Subtitles us  es  fr  it  nl  sv  
23.976 fps
2 hr 6 min
Seeds 11
2.11 GB
1920*1080
English 2.0
NR
Subtitles us  es  fr  it  nl  sv  
23.976 fps
2 hr 6 min
Seeds 16

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by mgruebel 7 / 10

Granddaddy of disaster flicks

Max Catto was a prolific novelist in the 50s and 60s, churning out adventure tales and dramas, just the right kind to turn into movies. Sort of like John Clancy, who will be equally forgotten in 50 years. Probably the most famous Catto oeuvre is "Trapeze," starring Burt Lancaster as a trapeze artist training Tony Curtis to do a deadly stunt, with Gina Lollobrigida to heat things up. It's quite a good movie, and in fact Catto's book was renamed after the film when "Trapeze" did well at the box office!

"Devil" is Catto's effort at combining drama and disaster: A disillusioned priest (Spencer Tracy) finds God again with the help of three convicts (one of them Frank Sinatra) when a Pacific volcano island is about to blow its top, and they must rescue a children's leper colony with a beautiful young nurse thrown in for Frankie. So we have everything here: lava, death, lepers, love story, drunk priests, evil French governors who turn out to have a heart after all, atheist doctors, prostitutes-turned nurse. Catto is at it with interesting characters!

Ultimately, this is what makes this film so watchable even decades later: it's got interesting people feeling each other out while the simple linear plot of "the big one's gonna blow, and we have a deadline to get outta here" takes its inevitable course. As in many films of that era, there's no happy ending for many of the characters, not just the token misfortune you get in most dramas nowadays because we know that "audiences don't like unhappy endings." Well, I do like good films, even if they have unhappy endings.

"Devil" is the granddaddy of disaster films, and spawned a whole industry in the 70s from "Towering Inferno" to "Poseidon Adventure" to "Earthquake" (all better than their remakes because they focused on the humans, not the buildings).

The special effects in this film are soooo much more realistic than the CGI crap we get in most disaster movies nowadays. The reason is they were all physical, with actual flames, mud pits, dust from collapsing building, boulders falling, churches shaking, cracks opening in the ground. Yes, some are rubber rocks and plants on sets, but they're still 'real.' The fakest-looking things are the lava flows and volcanic eruption flames, which do not quite match the real thing - but still look pretty good. For example, in the lava flows, which are well- simulated with crusty cooler rock flowing on red viscous rock, the thing that's missing is the shimmer you get from real superheated air above the rocks, as anyone familiar with volcano documentaries knows. Still, they are better than modern CGI lava flows, which behave completely nonphysically. (I confess I am a physics guy, so I am sensitive to totally unrealistic special effects that violate Newton's laws.)

A commendable movie, as are Catto's now-forgotten books, most of which of course have been ripped off knowingly or unknowingly by the current generation of equally doomed bestseller writers. A fun to watch, family-safe 7/10 if you can tolerate a bit of sermonizing by Tracy and his disciples, who are offset by plenty of doubting doctors, truck drivers and convicts.

Reviewed by kcox-12 7 / 10

Great old classic

Own this movie and always enjoy watching it. I remember first seeing it at the drive-in theater when I was a kid. The volcanic eruption and lava is really awesome...whether it's realistic or not, I don't know, but it's sure neat to watch. The island setting is beautiful and the filming is well done. The earthquake was pretty cool, too. I like the fact that the 3 convicts turn out to be decent guys who do what has to be done. Frank Sinatra, especially changes from the cocky smart-mouthed know-it-all to a person with feelings for others. The ending, with the island exploding is pretty outrageous, but, again, fun to watch. I really like this show! Watch it for fun, not to critique its realism.

Reviewed by Nazi_Fighter_David 7 / 10

A film that builds momentum slowly before unleashing its fury..

Disaster films can be great fun—they can also live up to their title... Disaster films also have a tendency to be very formulated and very clichéd... To see a disaster film with actual originality, or at least a decent plot twist, would definitely be a welcome surprise...

'The Devil at 4 O'Clock' takes place before the actual eruption... There is enough tension in the air to keep the audience interested... The film opens with a small plane bound for Tahiti, stopping for the night at the small French island of Kalua, where the Governor is notifying the authorities of a disturbance at the mouth of the island volcano...

The passengers are three chained convicts—Harry, Mareel, and Charlie— and Father Perreau (Kerwin Mathews), who has come to replace Father Doonan... The Governor releases the three convicts into Father Doonan's charge, and they are sent to repair the chapel at a children's leper hospital...

When Father Doonan prepares to leave Kalua, the volcano erupts and an earthquake rocks the island... So he enlists the convicts' aid, promising to speak up for commuting their sentences if they will help him evacuate the hospital and rescue the children...

Spencer Tracy is very well suited to the movie and gives the boost it needs to be a successful action film... He does a great job in the leading man role as the strong, determined priest trapped with the outgoing tide that following afternoon...

Frank Sinatra backs up the legendary actor as the brave Harry who brings the children safely to the waiting schooner, bids his new bride farewell, and returns to meet the devil at 4 o'clock...

Barbara Luna—the lovely blind girl dangerously in love—gives a nice aspect of romance to the film but there is a severe lack of chemistry between her and Sinatra... Their relationship seems extremely rushed...

'The Devil at 4 O'Clock,' vaguely resembling 'The Inn of the Sixth Happiness,' is a film that builds momentum slowly before unleashing its fury...

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