Earthquake (1974) - full transcript

Construction Engineer Stuart Graff is estranged from his jealously possessive wife, Remy, and has an affair with Denise Marshall, the widow of a co-worker. Meanwhile, Remy tries to persuade her father, Sam Royce, who is Stuart's employer, to use his influence to stop Stuart from seeing Denise. Rogue policeman Lew Slade is suspended from the L.A.P.D. for having punched an obtuse officer from another jurisdiction. Embittered, Slade contemplates quitting the police force. Jody, a perverted grocery store manager, lusts after Rosa Amici, sister of Sal, the assistant to Miles Quade, an aspiring daredevil motor cyclist. The lives of all these people are devastated when a major earthquake rips through Los Angeles and reduces the city to ruins.


God damn it!

Your last words
last night.

The very first words you
greet me with this morning.

Don't you think you ought
to do something about

your vocabulary?

Yeah, while you
expand your chest.

Didn't you get enough exercise
jogging this morning?

Don't you ever
get tired?

I don't think I'm gonna have
time for breakfast this morning.

Why not? It's ready.

Denise Marshall's boy asked me
for an autographed football.

I'm gonna drop it off
on the way to the office.

An autographed football
from you.

(LAUGHING) And you haven't
played football in 16 years.

Well, I guess it's part of this
nostalgic binge everybody's on.

Anyway, it's the ball
Frank Gifford signed.

That's the signature
he really wants.

You know,
I find it peculiar.

Almost amusing.

The widow Brian Marshall comes
back into town after seven months,

and you rush off without even
so much as a cup of coffee.

But if I ask you...

If you ask me to
stop off at the market

to pick up a head of lettuce
for you, I'd find some excuse.


(SIGHS) You know, if it
wasn't 7:30 in the morning,

I would have a drink.

I didn't know you
were a clock-watcher.


What did you say?

I said, I didn't know
you were a clock-watcher.

Don't you dare
lower your voice to me.

Look, what's
this all about?

I know you. I've been
married to you long enough.

I know the more contempt you feel
for me, the lower the voice.

Hell, Remy, you'd hardly call
this a marriage, would you?

Going now, Remy.

I said, I'm leaving.







Remy! Remy.


Jim? Stewart Graff.
She's done it again.

Yeah, I think we'll get faster
action if you call the ambulance.


Well, of course
I'll induce vomiting.

I know
the rules by now.

Just get over here,
will you?


Oh! Oh, my God.
Oh! Oh.



If you're going to throw
the pills in the toilet,

you might
at least flush it.


Man, that was a jolt.

You can
forget your coffee.

We got an emergency
inspection to run.

I'm off duty
in half an hour.

It was
just a little tremor.

That's a solid
concrete dam.

Well, those are
the rules, Max.

You can always
use the overtime.

Yeah, I suppose so.


Is everything okay?


Why don't you check the base?
I'll look down below.

At 7:46 this morning,

a minor earthquake registering
3.1 on the Richter scale

was felt in the Los Angeles area.
No injuries were reported.

minimal property damage...

Repeating a KJB Sig Alert.

Hello, Laura?

This is Mr. Graff.
My secretary in yet?


Well, tell her I'll be
a little late, huh?

All right, Mr. Graff,
I'll tell her.

Let me speak to him.

Oh, Mr. Graff? Just a moment,
it's your father-in-law.

Stewart, see me
as soon as you come in.

I want to go over that
Bill Cameron matter again.

Sam, I'm not
gonna budge on this.

I don't want to
lose this contract.

I'll talk to you
about it later.

Thank you.
Yes, sir.





Fred! Fred?




Watch it, Lew.

You nearly wrecked us up
in that last turn.


You see? I told you.

We're gonna hear
about that one.

Want to drive,

No,no,no. You're driving.
You're driving.

We're over
the city line.

The Captain
will bust our rumps

if we mess up here
in the county again.

Do you remember what happened
with that guy Merle?

I still don't think his
gun went off by accident.

I get along just fine
with nine toes.


I told you to stay out of
the county, you bastard.


Some guys are just
too goddamned dumb

to stay
where they belong.

Do you know who owns that
hedge you just wrecked?

I'm gonna
tell you, Slade.

It's Zsa Zsa Gabor.

Com], forget
about the (fishes.

You'll be late
for school

Come on.

And remember to go to Mrs.
Clark's when you come back, huh?

She'll look after you until
I'm home from the studio.



Hi. Come on in.

Hi. You brought it.

Sorry I forgot it
last week.

Where did
Frank Gifford sign?

Right there
under the laces.


Thanks, Mr. Graff. That'll
look great on my bookcase.

That's really nice
of you. Thank you.

Couldn't let down
my last fan.


Okay, have a good day.

Goodbye. Mom.

GRAFF: So long.

You know what?
GRAFF: What?

I've got a part
in a movie.

Oh, great.

Yeah, great. Three days
shooting, 22 lines.

It's hard. I've been
out of it so long.

Well, at least
I feel alive again,

and I didn't for so long
after Brian died.

Yeah. Well. I guess I
should get dressed.

Hey, did you feel
that tremor this morning?

It really
wasn't very strong.

No? Would you
like some coffee?


If there's an unbroken cup
somewhere that I can find.

It'll have to
be instant.

Yeah, well,
instant will be fine.

You know, Barbara says
you're the best...


Your boss's secretary.


And my one good friend.

Well, she says you're the
best engineer in the country.

Yeah, well, Barbara's paid
to say things like that.

Oh. Oh, that's the script
of the movie I'm doing.

"Movie I'm doing."

That's the overstatement
of the year.

Here I am,
two small scenes,

and I'm so worried,
I'm so nervous.

I was up all night
trying to figure out

how to make this
damn thing work.


Can I help you?

Yes. You could read
the lines with me.

It's just one scene.
One page.

I think I know it.

Right here,
near the top.


let me fill you in.

I play a bit player.

Now, the part you read
is a big movie star.

A drunk, a gambler, married
18 times, the whole thing.

And there's
a dinner party.

Now, an assistant director
invited me,

only he's not enough of a, whatever,
gentleman, to pick me up.

I have to drive myself.
Well, that's okay.

Now, they're all talking about
me just before I come in.

You know, asking him the usual
questions about bit players.

Talk, talk, talk, talk.
I come in.

Introductions, introductions,

Then our big star, you,
makes his appearance.

You ignore me,
for quite a while.

So, I say to you,
"Hello, Mr. Sheppard.

"It's been a long time.
How have you been?"

And you say...

"Do we know
each other?"

"You bet your ass we do."

That kind of a script.


And the character
I'm playing

is also supposed to
be a nymphomaniac.


And the director
of the picture

is a strong believer
in typecasting.

But anyway, I'll cope with that.
You want it black?

Yeah. Black's...

And don't worry.

Worry about what?

I'm not a nympho. Mind you,
I'm not Mary Poppins, either,

but I'm far
from being...

What's the male equivalent
of a nympho?

Satyr, I think.



And you don't need
to worry, either.


What I mean is, I'm not Billy
Graham exactly, but I'm no satyr.


Jesus, that tremor
must've stopped the clock.

It's a little
after 9:00.

And I have
a 10:00 call.

I'm sorry,
I've got to run.

I'm overdue
at the office.

Listen. Thank you
for everything.

I mean, the cueing, the
football and the sympathy.

And as Mary Poppins
would say,



Eight stitches to close his
lower lip, six loosened teeth.

You aren't supposed to do things
like that to a brother officer.

Not a brother officer, sir.
Merle is a county cop.

I'm talking about Los Angeles
cops and county cops.

That kid stole a car.

Then he got stoned and he
slammed into a little girl.

A little Mexican girl,
about six years old.

That little girl was thrown
about 15 feet in the air.

She was probably dead
before she hit the sidewalk.

Her blood covered
three whole cement squares.

Not spattered.
Solid. Just like paint.

The driver never
even slowed down.

And he almost got away because
some peckerwood rich man's whore

in a cop's uniform
was worried about a hedge!

You will receive a formal
notice of suspension.

And a date for
departmental trial.

Now, get on home.

Hey, Lew, how'd it go?


JOHNSON: Michelle,
get me the Valley reading.

MICHELLE: Okay. Have they
plotted the epicenter yet?

Yes, sir, it was
quite a shock. Yes.

Yes. Nevertheless, there's
no scientific evidence

that a 3.1 earthquake
can loosen dental fillings.

No. Right.
Thank you.

Walt! Your turn on
the PR desk.

Yes, that's right.
Dr. Adams. Room 14.

He isn't?

Well then I'd like
to leave a message.


Just a minute, okay?

Would you have him call Walter
Russell at the Seismology Institute?

Yeah, it's very important.

Yes, thank you.

Here's a strange one.

"Caretaker at the
Hollywood reservoir dam

"drowned at the bottom
of an elevator shaft."

They still haven't
figured out what happened.


What's the matter?
You look sick.

I just found out Dr. Adams stayed
up at the fault an extra day.


Well, I sent some
figures and a memo

into the Director's office
late yesterday afternoon.

I don't think he's
even read them yet.

Figures on what?

Well, I know
you'll laugh,

but I think we're gonna
have a really big quake.

Probably today.
Tomorrow at the latest.

And I wanted
Dr. Adams here

to back up
my computations.

Thought you were leaving
yesterday, Dr. Adams.

We've been held up.

But we hope to have most of the
instruments planted by noon.

Still haven't figured out exactly what
it is you fellas are trying to do.

It's rather technical.
That device

records minute variations
of seismic waves.

MR. GRIGGS: Huh. Well,
better start my plowing.

ADAMS: Thanks again for letting
us on your land, Mr. Griggs.

Once the trench
is filled in,

you'd never have
known we were here.



That was nice.
Real nice.

Yeah, tell me this, you gonna have
this thing ready for this afternoon?

I'll have it ready,
don't worry.

But I think we'll need an
extra can of butane there.

Come on, Sal, huh?

We'll pick one up when we go for
Rosa this afternoon, all right?

All right.

What I want to know is, are
you gonna get her to help us?

Yeah, yeah,
she'll help us.

Well, she's not too crazy
about our line of work, man.

Miles, I'll get her.

Well, you better,
because this Vegas job

is the biggest
break we ever had.

Miles, I'll get her.
I'll get her.

What do you want?
Will you relax?

All right.



Five forty-nine.



That'll be 20.16.

Forgot to
bring enough cash?

That's right.

Hey, I'll put this back.
Who needs protein anyway?

Don't worry about it. Drop the
money off the next time you're in.


MAN: Find anything?

All okay
as far as I can tell!

I'll check again!

I guess we won't find anything until
after the shaft is pumped out.

But everything looks fine.

Right. People drown
in elevators

every damn day
of the week.



Officer, can you order
these freaks out of here?

They've been scaring
my customers away,

and I've been trying
to get them to leave.

You got something
against religion?

What'“ you have?

Double bourbon, Jay.

In uniform, Lew?

Naked in a glass
will do just fine.

Spiro T. Agnew.

You asked to see me,
Dr. Stockle?

Sit down.

this is very interesting.

You forecast an earthquake in the three
to four point range this morning.

We had an earthquake in the three
to four point range this morning.

I'm impressed.

Thank you, sir.

However, isn't it
rather slender evidence

for predicting
a catastrophe?

Sir, these are based
on this morning's signals

from those stress
measurement instruments

that Dr. Adams sank during that
experimental well project.

They indicate
another pre-shock,

probably before
noon today.

And if it happens?

Then the big one
follows in 48 hours.

At least seven point.
Now, naturally,

if that second minor
shock doesn't occur,

then it just proves
that my computations

were based on
insufficient evidence.

But I think we
have a strong...

Russell, you are still
a graduate assistant.

Are you seriously contending
that a graduate assistant

would be the first
scientist in history

to pinpoint a major
earthquake within 48 hours?

No, sir.

But I am following through
on Dr. Adam's theories

and the probability curves
that he drew up.

But I feel that I've
been on the project...

Dr. Adams is on
a field trip upstate.

I sure wish he wasn't.

Thank you, Russell.

Leave those.

Fiona, I want some figures
run through the computer.

And try to get Frank Adams
for me in Fresno.


Yeah? Morning, Sam.

Morning, Stew.

Listen, you still refuse to
handle the Bill Cameron job

unless he upgrades
the specifications?



But you're gonna
have to convince him

that those changes
are necessary.

I could never talk him
into anything.

Oh, do me
one more favor, huh?

Don't muff the deal.

Oh, just a moment.

Mr. Royce, your daughter's
on the phone, 347.

Thank you.

He'll be right on.


Hello, Remy.


Well, I was planning on
eating here in the building.

Well, come on in.

No, away from the office.

Oh, it's terribly

Oh. Okay, honey.

The Windsor at 1:15?

And try to calm down.


here comes another one.


It's a pretty good shake.

Oh, shit!

Hey, that shot didn't count.
No way can it count.

Hey, nothing in the rule
book about eatlh quakes..

It didn't count.

Yeah, it did.

CHAVEZ: Hardly ever get
two in one morning.

Two what?



In another half hour,
I won't feel the one

that's supposed to knock
California into the ocean.


The Captain's
cooled off.

He's gonna do his damnedest
to straighten things out.

I don't want to
be a cop anymore.

Right since
the time I was a kid,

I figured on cops
helping folks, you know?

Folks who couldn't
help themselves.

All right,
maybe that was dumb of me,

but that's the way
I figured.

But folks don't count
for a diddly, do they?


Take it easy, now. I'll
call you at home later.

Sure, Emilio.


The shot counted.

Bobby Riggs.

That wasn't there
before the tremor.

I know every inch of this dam.
It's a new one.

Max, I'm a trained technician.
You're a watchman.

Now, stop trying to
teach me my business.

It wasn't there.

There's no such thing as solid
concrete and you know it.

Hairline cracks are bound to
appear from time to time.

You don't
panic over them.

The water's rising. It's gone up
half an inch since the quake.

He's right. What the
hell is going on?

JOHNSON: But it could all
be coincidence.

I don't see running wild
over some untested theory,

at least until we've
heard from Frank Adams.

After all, it's his research
project, and not Walt's.

No one can
find Frank Adams.

No one was sure
the atom bomb would work

until they dropped it.
It worked.

Our present problem is

what in God's name
do we do now?

Well, we warn people.

Do we?

Think about it.

A public announcement now that a
major earthquake is imminent,

that could create
incredible panic.

People climbing
over people

trying to get out
of the city.

That could be a worse disaster
than the quake itself.

But an orderly evacuation could save
hundreds of thousands of lives.

An orderly evacuation
to Where?

The desert?
The mountains?

How do you feed
and shelter

four million people
in open country?

And suppose we release this information
and there isn't a big quake?

Well, what's the point in learning
how to predict an earthquake,

if you don't do anything about
it after you predict it?


Russell, look!

Dr. Johnson and I
are not cynical.

But a false alarm now,
even if it went no further

than the Mayor or
the Governor's office,

would destroy
the institute's credibility.

LOOK. Russell!

Four or five years
from now,

we come up with a foolproof
detection system.

Who in authority is
gonna believe us then?



No. No, no,
don't call his wife.

I'll take care
of it myself.

Frank Adams is dead.

So's young Ward.

They were working in a
trench across the fault.

The walls collapsed.

Fiona, get me
the Mayor's office.

It's a matter of
gravest urgency.

See if you can push the blueprint
room on those revised drawings

for the Cameron job,
will you, Carl?

He'll want to see them
this afternoon.

Okay, Stewart.

I've got to get out
of here for a while.

This place is
closing in on me.

Hi. You finished
working already?

Never got started.

Would you believe it?
The tremor damaged the set,

and they rescheduled
my scene for tomorrow.

So, I thought I'd
drop in on Barbara.

Something wrong?

No, I need a drink.

Oh. Are you one of
those solitary drinkers?

Not if I can help it.
Would you join me?

Yes. Yes.

ROYCE: Do you realize what
you're asking of me?

What's really happening
with you two?

He's been seeing
Brian Marshall's widow.

Well, of course. He feels
obligated to help her out.

Her and her boy.

Oh, Albert Schweitzer wasn't
that dedicated to mankind.

There's more to it,

It was Stewart who assigned
Brian that propane cavern job,

and he's been
blaming himself

for what happened
ever since.

Oh, Dad,
don't be so naive.

I know they're
having an affair.

When you met Stewart,
he was a dirt-poor boy

trying to work his way through
college on an athletic scholarship.

I think you still
half see him that way.

But he's a top man now.

He doesn't need me,
he doesn't need anybody.

There isn't a firm in town wouldn't
take him on his own terms.

How big a quake?

A seven on the Richter
scale, possibly higher.

That could release more than
the total energy generated

by the Hiroshima, Nagasaki
nuclear bombs combined.

If i issue
a public warning,

you know what will
happen to this city?

Of course we know,
that's impossible.

But there are some precautions
you could take, aren't there?

Alert the police,
the fire department.

Have the Governor
mobilize the National Guard.

Well, he could announce
that it's necessary

to prevent looting at
the Valley quake site.

Well, the police have that
situation totally under control.

Mayor Lewis, the next
situation, if it comes,

would be somewhat different.

The Governor and I aren't
even in the same party.

If this turns out
to be a false alarm,

he'll make me look like the biggest
fool west of the Mississippi.

Second biggest.
I'll top the list.

What do you say, Lew?

Hey, Rosa...

Hiya, pal.

...the ladies room
is through that door

and a couple of
steps to the right.

You still pursuing
those evildoers?

Not as hard as usual.

MILES: Hey, Jay, we want a couple of
burgers and some orange juice to go.

JAY: Two burgers and
orange juice to go.

The 50 bucks, Miles. You
owed me for three weeks.

Hey, listen, man. What if
I pay you tomorrow. Okay?

Hey, the 50.

You're a great bike rider
but a lousy pool shooter.

Officer, I mean, you're not gonna let
him get away with this, are you?


Fifty bucks,
or I'll break your back.

Peter Fonda.

Peter Fonda...

Hey, hey, Sal.
Hey, wait.

Here. Take it.

Yeah, I'll take it.

Thanks. Brother.


SAL: Miles,
what're you doing?

All I've got is a dollar and
some loose change on me.

Hey, Lew, hey, come on.
Lend me 10 bucks, huh?

I don't have time
to go to the bank.

You better stop breathing
those gas fumes so much.

Hey, listen, Lew,
this is an emergency, man.

We need a butane tank
for the stunt.

That son of a bitch just
left me 10 bucks short.

Look,I'll have it back to you tomorrow.
I promise.

Come on, Lew. This is
really important to me.

This big guy
is coming down

from one of the big Vegas
hotels to see this act.

Now, there has never ever
been anything like this.

If that hotel
sponsors us, man,

I could wind up on ABC's
Wide World of Sports, man.

And after that, you can
forget about Evel Knievel.

It'll be just
the Miles Quade Story.

You know, I'm sorry
I ever arrested you two.

I've been paying
for it ever since.


Rosa, I want you
to meet Lew Slade.

He's the cop who
flattened Miles and I

with a blackjack at the North
Hollywood rally last year.

Hey, that's right. And we
didn't even start that ruckus.

Well, you should've knocked
their brains into place.

Come here, Rosa.
I want to talk to you.

Come here. Listen.
If I had the bread,

I would hire a beautiful,
sexy broad this afternoon,

and I would kick your
ass all the way home.

Well, I don't
need your help. Bye.

Now, Rosa,
will you listen to me?

Daredevil motorcyclists
always have to have

beautiful, sexy broads
hanging around.

Rosa, that's right.
What do you want,

us to look like
phonies or what?

Sal, I'm your sister. What about Maureen?
She's your girlfriend.

Come on, Rosa. Maureen
is too flat-chested.

Rosa, come here.

Now, Rosa, I want you to show
the officer your t-shirt.

Oh, yeah, Lew,
take a look at this.

We're gonna have 20,
maybe 30,000 of these

made up after
the Vegas show.

Go ahead, take a look.
See what you think of it.

I think it's beautiful.

GRAFF: My wife will ask
me, "Is she pretty?"

I'll say, "Quite."

And she'll say,
something like,

"That figures.
Tell me about her."

And you'll say, "Nothing much to tell.
We just had a drink."

And she'll ask me,
"No small talk?"

"Very little. A trait that
goes with engineering."

Yeah, maybe it does.

It's good.

Can I ask you something?

Sure. Anything.

When we made love,

when you made love to me,
it was with such...

Such”. I'm trying to think
of exactly the right word.

It was with such...



Yeah, anger.


Did I anger you?


I think you are
absolutely lovely.

Well, I think so, too.
I'm not hurt.

Tell me, how long has Barbara
worked at the office?

Oh, 10, 12 years.

Well, did you ever know me
to drop in on her before?

No. Certainly not since
you got back to LA.

Well, maybe I didn't
want to see Barbara.

Maybe I wanted
to see you. Hmm?

How about that?

Yeah. How about that?

So, you didn't
seduce me.

I seduced you.


Well, next time
I'll do the honors.

Oh, don't feel there
has to be a next time.

Don't think that you just
made a lifelong commitment.

Come here.


Come here.

I have to go to
Oregon this summer.

All summer on
a hydroelectric project.

Come up there,
with Corry.

I'll rent a house
for the two of you.

It's such beautiful, really beautiful
country. It'd be great for him.


I'll think about it.

I'll come back tonight.

I'll think
about that, too.

interrupt our regular program

to bring you
a special bulletin.

The Governor
has just announced

that the following
National Guard units

have been put on emergency
active duty status.

The Fourth
Infantry support group,

the 227th Heavy
Transport Battalion,

the 112th
Headquarters Company,

the 33rd
Communications Battalion,

the 47th Engineers Company.

WOMAN: Oh, my God.

Let me show you
What's happening.

First of all,
we start up there.

Then it's down that ramp, like
hell into that first big loop,

up this ramp,
zoom over the truck,

down this ramp and straight
into that big figure eight.

Then it's down that ramp
right into that fire ring.

Now, that fire ring doesn't just
have flames on the outside,

like in your dog acts.

No, no, we rigged
those gas jets

to shoot flames
right in the center.

Then it's down that ramp, over
that pit, and we're home free.

Now, you take a guy
like Knievel.

Now, he'll jump 20,
maybe 30 cars,

and call it
a big goddamn thing.

(LAUGHS) But, baby,
let me tell you something,

compared to those,

landing on a roof of a car
at 100 miles an hour,

that's like
landing in a water bed.


you're out of your mind.

Hey. but. Rosa, wait a minute.
No. No. way.

If you want to help your best
friend kill himself, fine.

Rosa, listen. Now, listen.
Don't be rotten.

There's nothing to it.
It is simple!

Who do you think
you're kidding?

I'm going to a movie.

ROSA: Clint Eastwood
at the Royal.

Rosa, wait a minute.


You're gonna fix it up.

All right,
all right, all right.

She's nervous. She's...
Yeah. sure.

Where's them cantaloupes?

We asked you for some
free cantaloupes, Jody.

Say, my friend, what
kind of friend are you?

Still playing
soldier boy, Jody?

That's right.
We saw on television

where you're gonna
go play soldier boy.

Say, say, say.
Say, say, say.

Is it true that
blondes have more fun?

Oh, no. Look at that.
I told you he was a fag.

Say, Jody, you a fag?

If I'd known you
was a fag, Jody,

I'd have been
up here before.

I could've
used the money.


Fall in!
Hey. yo.

Left, right. Left, right.
Ho. Hup. Hup.

Let's decorate
the warrior.

SANDY: Eyes straight to the front, soldier.
Quit looking around.

GRAFF: Now the motion
in this model was programmed

from the actual recorded ground
motion of a 6.2 earthquake.

Long Beach in '33.

Now, a magnitude of eight
would produce a motion...

What's your point?

Bill, we live in an earthquake zone.
What can I tell you?

That I've failded to meet city
or state safety requirements?

That's not the point. I think
we should go beyond the codes.

You remember
the Sylmar quake.

A lot of buildings that
met the code collapsed..

You know how much money I pour
into this company every year?

You bet I do.

And you're willing to risk losing my
business for something like this?

Yes, I am.


The revised prints on the interior
are in my office, Mr. Cameron.

I figured you'd
want to go over them.

I'll see
what it costs me.

And I thought you
were gonna chew me out

for leaning
on Bill Cameron.

Oh, I just figured it was time
I kicked myself upstairs.

And I always like
the feel of that name,

"Chairman of the Board."
Has a nice ring.

Mr. President.

(LAUGHS) Jesus!

Thanks, Sam.

Oh, listen.
You're gonna have to

forget about that
Oregon project, I guess.

We can't have
a new company president

pouring cement
out in the woods somewhere.

What's the matter?

Look, I just promoted you.
I didn't fire you.

No, Sam, you're gonna
figure I'm crazy,

but I'd like a little
time to think this over.


Any problems
I ought to know about?


Just a few priorities I've got
to get straight in my head.



Remy didn't have anything
to do with this, did she?

Don't worry.

You'd have this job even if
you weren't my son-in-law.


Oh, hold that.

GRAFF: Hello. Denise?

Stewart. Hi.

Look. I'm not gonna be
able to make it tonight.

Something important
came up at work.

Any trouble?

No. No trouble. I've just
got a problem to solve.

I'm sorry.

I'm sorrier
than you are.

Oh, it doesn't matter
about tonight.

We'll have lots of time
together up in Oregon.

Okay? Bye-bye.






Okay if I go to
the playground?

Sure. Just be careful
crossing that bridge,huh?

And, Corry, if I'm not home
when you get back, don't worry.

I might
take a walk later.

If leave
the kitchen door unlocked.

I think I'll make
a practice run.

Loosen up the machine.

All right, Sal.

Miles! Jesus!



you all right? Huh?

Came out of
that damn thing.

What happened? Huh?

Come on,
help me try again.

Listen to me, Miles.

We only have one 250 left.
You understand me?

Huh? What're you talking about.

I gotta try it again!

Okay, you're the boss.

Come on.


All right, Miles, come on, baby.
Come on!

Come on!
Let her roll!

...delay in the contract,
I suggest...


You knew Brian Marshall?


Ever meet his wife?

Sure. We see
each other all the time.

What's she like?

She's a very nice girl.

I was afraid of that.



LAURA: Mr. Royce, your daughter's
on the way into your office.



Good afternoon,
Mrs. Graff.

REMY: Hello, Barbara.

Have you spoken
to Stewart yet?


He said he wanted
to think about it.

Miles, here he comes now.
The guy from Vegas.

Oh, baby. This is gonna be
the greatest run of my life.

I'm tuned to just
the right pitch.


Now, you go on home and put
this right out of your mind.

You look exhausted.


Sam, I...

Hello, Remy.

Well,I guess you've got
yourself a new president.


And you'll stay away
from that Marshall woman?



Stewart, wait.

where are you going?

Anywhere. A bar.

Why are you so angry?

Remy, don't you understand?
That was a bribe.

Another bribe!

Our whole marriage has
been a series of bribes.

And you took them.

Well, it's time I quit.

You're really going to see that
Marshall bitch, aren't you?

Not till tonight.

Oh, finally you
admit the truth.

It wasn't
the truth until today.

It was never the truth!
It is now.


I'm not that stupid.





Finally found
the trouble.

I guess the earthquake
busted the conduit

and it's flooded
the bottom of the shaft.




Get down!


WOMAN: Oh, my God!










WOMAN: Holy mother of God!


Help me!
Oh, God, help me! Help!

MAN: What is she doing?


WOMAN: What's happening?






Oh, God!




MAN: Turn off the gas!



GRAFF: Oh, my God!

Stay here.


MAN 1: Help.


MAN 2: Is there
a doctor around here?

Barbara! Barbara!

Mr. Cameron threw me
out of the elevator.

And then I heard all
those people screaming!


Barbara, it's the first time the old
bastard ever did anybody a favor.

All right, take it
easy, everybody.

It's over now.
It's over.

Over here,
take care of it.

Ben, get the first
aid kits over there.

All right, all right, now
listen to me, everybody.

Let's just settle down.


ROYCE: The worst is over, do you
understand? The worst is over.

WOMAN: What's happening?



Break the windows. Break the windows!
Come on, over there!

It's not safe here!

ROYCE: Come on, get out of here.
Get out!

Come on, hurry up.
Hurry up. Come on.


MAN: Don't stop!










PATROLMAN: Calling Van Nuys.
Calling Van Nuys.

We really got problems.

Thank God we had
mobile units to bring in.

Let's get to
the control panel.

MAN: Fires out of control,
Van Nuys Hospital,

all roads blocked between
Victory and Kittridge.

Is there any way I can
broadcast to the whole city,

get picked up on
transistor sets?

There's a few
commercial stations

on the quake fringe area
still operating.

We might be able to rig a
microwave relay to one of them.

Well, get on it, then.

SLADE: Hey, you, come here.
Help this guy, damn it!

Slide him out
from under there.

Hey, who do you have to know
to get a drink around here?

Shut off that gas valve.

Help me. Help me.


Help me. Help me.

INSPECTOR: You guys, check that edge.
Both sides.

You two, check up here.
Both sides.

Couple of guys
down below.

It held.
My God, it held.

How much longer?

I'm gonna divert some
water into the spillways.

We gotta cut down
on the pressure.

Not Without official
permission, you're not.

(SIGHS) It's dead.

I told you to
leave that alone.

The city's gonna need every
drop of water it can get.

There's dozens of fires
down there already.

If this dam busts,
there won't be nothing

between here and Wilshire
Boulevard left to burn.

The quake may have broken
something inside. (GRUNTS)

It won't budge.
It won't budge.


ROYCE: Stewart, you'd
better get out of here.

The whole building
is full of phosgene.

You'd better get out, too.
Maybe there's some way

down through
an elevator shaft.

Shut the door.

It's giving.
I've got it.


Shut it.

Get me... Get me a
chair, with arms.

All right,
put it down there.


Pull it all the way.

Here, hold this.

All right, pull the chair.
Hold it up here.


We need something
flexible to strap 'em in.

Pantyhose. Barbara, take off
your pantyhose, damn it.

You, too. Come on.
Take off your pantyhose.

Get it out.
Get it out.

Here's one.

Here comes the first one.

Let her down as
slow as you can.

And keep down the sway.



It's okay.
You made it.

It's all right now.

Now, let me
give it another shot.

Now, try it again.



You guys owe me
a six-pack.

You got it.



Corry, sweetie. All right.
Okay. I'll get you out.


Okay, it's going
to be all right.

I'll lift you up.
Okay, try...


I don't believe it.
I don't believe it.

What do you mean?


The ramps are busted, the loops
are busted, the rings are busted.

I hope to God Evel Knievel
was in town today.





Please, help me!


Help! Help!

Here! Down here!

Help me.
My son is hurt. Help us.

Come on.


Take it easy. lady.
Come on. Yeah.

Push him up here.
Push him up here, lady.


MILES: Got him?
Got him.

SAL: Yeah, I got him.


Stay right there
and watch those wires.

It'll be hours before we drain
off enough to do any good.



Help me.

MILES: Hold on, lady.

Help me.
Hold on, lady.

Miles. put him right here.
MILES: Here we go.

Where are we gonna
take him, huh?

There's no hospital
for miles.

I guess we better head
for the police station.

Yeah. Yeah, let's go.

WOMAN 1: How can I find out about my
daughter? She's in County Hospital.

MAN 1: My store.
The whole front is gone.

You've got to
help me protect it.

MAN 2: Why aren't
the firemen here yet?

WOMAN 2: Please,
help me find a doctor.

My husband's
legs are broken.

Now, look... Stop!

You're all gonna
have to help yourselves.

Most of the police in this district
were killed in that station house.

And the guys that were on
patrol when the quake hit,

well, they probably got more
to do than they can handle.

Now, look, you get as many
volunteers as you can.

Go to that hardware store
over there.

Now, if it's locked,
break in.

Find as many picks
and shovels as you can.

And start looking for people
who are buried alive.

There are plenty of 'em, believe me.
Give him a hand.

Move your ass!

Come on, let's go.

Now, I want all the women and the kids who
have houses in any kind of shape at all,

to go to them
and to stay there.

Now, turn off
all the gas lines...

Hey, I'm getting

ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen,
stand by for a message

from the Mayor
of Los Angeles.

MAYOR: This city has suffered
the greatest natural disaster

in the history of
the United States.

The state and the nation
are rallying to our aid.

But for the next few hours, until
massive help can reach us,

we will have to depend on our own
physical and spiritual resources.

Private physicians
should report

to emergency aid stations, now being set
up at key sites throughout the city.

Bring all the medical
supplies you can carry.

Clinics have been established
in the following locations,

the Hollywood Bowl, the Occidental
Insurance building, the Wilson Plaza...

Laura, my father?

Is he all right?

My father!
Laura, my father! God!

Go on. Come on,
you're next. Move.




You all right?

Sam, why didn't you go ahead
of some of the younger guys?

Staying up here
was crazy.


I don't think I'm strong enough to
lower you all the way by myself.

So, get ready
for a jolt.



Let's get out of here.

Give me your hand,
will you?

Watch yourself.

Easy. Easy.

Do you know
Denise Marshall, Barbara?


See if you can
get to a phone,

find out
if she's all right.

Are the phones working?

Try. please!

Come on,
let's get out of here.

are the phones working?

Out all over the city.


Hey, Lew.


Look, we got
a hurt kid in the back.

He's in shock.

Well, all we can do is keep him warm
until we can get up to a doctor.


You figure you can find your way
to Wilson Plaza in this heap?

They got an emergency medical
station set up down there.

I got to find my sister Rosa.
She went to the movies.

We've got a lot of injured to move
and you're gonna move them in this.

And I'm gonna stay here.

Come on, now give me the bike.
I've got to find Rosa.

Listen, just do what he says.
I'll find Rosa on the bike.

I can get around
better than anybody.

Okay. Move out.
Single file.

MAN: Got it.

WOMAN: Over there! There's
a store open over there!

MAN 1: Okay.
Hey, grab the cash!

WOMAN: Okay!

MAN 2: This way!

MAN 3: Let's go, this way.

Hey, you all.
Over here.

Let's go.

Hey, get away from
that cash register.

I was just trying to get
home and I was hungry.

Look, I'd like to
let you go, miss,

but we have
strict orders on looters.

They're all supposed
to be placed under arrest.

I was just hungry...
And no exceptions.

Now, come on,
let's go. Come on.

must leave the garage area

after dropping off

Hot coffee and food is available in
basement shopping levels two and three.

Please keep moving.
Move right along.

Please keep moving.

More doctors are waiting
at the first garage level.

Hot coffee and food is available in
basement shopping levels two and three.

All cars must leave the garage
area after dropping off patients.

Please keep moving.

More doctors are waiting
at the first garage level.

Cars must leave the garage area
after dropping off patients.

Hold it. Hold it.


Get me
a blood pressure.

Wait. How do you feel?

(GASPING) Hard to breathe.

VANCE: Chest pains?

He's had a heart attack.
Come on.

Start him on
a liter of 5% dextrose.

OFFICER: Cars must leave the garage
area after dropping off patients.


Denise and her boy
will need help, too.

I've got to try
and find them.

Is she more important than me? Than
our life together? Than everything...

for God's sake...

we tried to be...

I'm sorry.

Cars must leave the garage area
after dropping off patients.

Please keep moving. Hot coffee
and food is available in...

I'm talking with the people
at the dam, Mayor Lewis.

They're maintaining
a constant inspection.

I can't take any chances,

Dr. Stockle said we can
expect aftershocks.

And I just got a report from the
Building and Safety Department.

They say some structures
may look perfectly sound

but have been so weakened, that even
a minor quake can bring them down.

Evacuate the area
immediately below the dam.

precautionary evacuation. We repeat,

there is no present danger
of the dam collapsing.

Move to high ground, west of Highland
Avenue and north of Franklin.

This is
a precautionary evacuation.


I repeat, this is
a precautionary evacuation.

Wait! Wait! They're not lying to you.
You've got plenty of time.

Stay there. Stay there.
Come on, lay down.

You're gonna be all right.
You're gonna be all right.


Hey, Sid.

How come you took
this bunch prisoners?

Suspicion of looting.

Hey, how about turning that dark-haired
girl over to me? She's a friend.

Yeah. Sure. Hey, you.
Come here. Yeah. Come on.

Can I go home now?

Can't allow that.
You're my responsibility.

Come on.

It's a couple dozen blocks
back to your house,

and now that it's getting
dark, the animals are loose.


You just make yourself comfortable
inside the store here,

I have to
send out patrols.

You all patrol that area up there
and watch out for looters.

Move out!

HANK: Hey, Sarge,
look what we found.

Jody! For Christ's
sake, what a break!

HANK: Caught these guys around the corner.
Their car broke down.

Look at the goodies
they had with them.

You think we ought
to shoot 'em?

Jody, we've just
been putting you on.

You can't
kill guys for that.

Maybe they didn't steal
these necklaces and things.

Maybe they're just fags who like
to dress up in women's jewels.

You find any dresses
in the car?

(CHUCKLES) No, Jody.

Well, I guess we'll
have to shoot 'em.

Hey, wait a minute, Jody. I was telling
these guys just today to lay off.

I swear to God, I was.
Ask 'em.

Ask 'em.

Sure, those naked guys on the
wall, that didn't mean nothing.

We knew that you lifted
weights and all that crap.

Scum like you think you can
get away with anything.

Push people around when you want to.
Steal when you want to.

Make fun of men who have
to work for a living, huh?

But not today. Hey, come back, you guys.
I was only kidding.

Hey, don't do that, man.


Not like back in the
store, is it, Miss Amici?

No scrawny bitches
coming in asking for

double Green Stamps two days
after the special's over, huh?

None of that stuff.

Move it! I want this whole
patrol area quarantined.

No civilians are to be allowed
through without being questioned.

Can't tell.
They might be looters.

What about the people trying to get
through to Wilson Plaza aid station?

I meant everybody.

There's no other
clear streets around here.

Move out!




All right. out. What
are you talking about?

You're healthy enough
to walk.

I got a lot of injured
to move and I mean, fast.

That dam up there is liable
to go at any minute.

I've got some people
I've got to find.

This thing looks like it'll go
anywhere and that's just what I need.

Now, get out.
Just a minute.

You're one of those trouble
makers, aren't you?

I've never shot a trouble maker
before, or are you gonna get out?

Look. I'm looking for a girl and a
little boy. They mean a lot to me.

Send your butler.

Where's the shift?

All of them. Depends
on what you want to do.

That's a customized

It's got eight forward
speeds, and three reverse.

All of them a hell of a lot
harder to operate than that .38.

All right, you're
an ambulance driver.


I'm sorry.
It's been a hell of a day.

Okay, that's it.
We got one more.



We are in desperate need
of blood type AB negative.

Check Red Cross blood bank, and
report back. Officer Scott.

OFFICER ON MEGAPHONE: Coffee and food is available

in basement shopping
levels two and three.

SAL: I never thought we'd get here.

A long time to go
a couple of lousy miles.

Listen, lady, I gotta go now. I gotta
move the truck out. I'll see you.

Thank you very much.

He's had a bad fall, he's hit his
head and he just won't come to.

Can I go with him?

No, no. We'll get in touch with you.
On the third level.

Thank you.

Right around there.

MAN: Coming through.


not needing medical aid,

please stay away
from the field hospital.

WOMAN: Please, help me. Somebody.
Doctor, nurse, anybody...

MAN: The building must
have its own generators.


Barbara! Barbara!

Are you okay?

I'm just terrified. You?

I'm fine, but Corry's
had a bad fall.

He's upstairs with the doctor.

Stewart Graff,
is he all right?

Yeah, he's all right,
the last I saw,

but Mr. Royce
had a heart attack.

He's had a heart attack?

I'm just waiting word
from the doctor.

Listen, I've got to
get out of here,

I'm going up for some air.

Will you come with me? No.
I'd rather stay here.

I'll see you later.
Take care.





He's gone.
He never had a chance.

Should I tell
his daughter?

I don't want any deaths reported to the
survivors until things settle down.

JODY: Miss Amici.

Miss Amici?

You better eat.
This is nice and fresh.

Hank got into
the deli down the street.

A lot of guys with hair over
regulation length wear 'em.


You know, I really used to look forward
to seeing you in the supermarket.

You never complained like all the
rest of those women... Carrying on.

Thank you.

And I hope the lousy store
was knocked flat.

What I really want to do
is open a karate school.

I'll have enough
saved pretty soon.

A lot of money
in karate, you know.

I'll give you
free lessons.

I'm not
really very hungry.

It's a hot night out.

Why don't you
take off that jacket?

You always liked me, too.
I could tell.

You never said anything,
but I could tell.


(STUTTERS) Don't...
Don't hurry me.

It's no real fun
that way.


Everything all right?

Yeah, fine.


Another one of those
damned earth slides

on the other side of the reservoir?

That's a scary sound.

How is he?

Oh, he's going
to be all right.

Mild shock
and a concussion.

I've given him something
to help him sleep.

Where are you
taking him now?

Well, the Army
Medics have set up

their field x-ray trucks
in the third level garage.

Doctor! Doctor! Why aren't
you with my father?

Don't bother me now.




Get down!

Get down!

emergency aid stations

are already functioning...

Are you sure you know
the way to Wilson Plaza?

Damn it. That's
where I just came from.

ANNOUNCER: The Mayor's
office has not yet released

a damage report
on the aftershock.

However, details are expected momentarily.
Please stand by...

(SCOFFS) There's other buildings
sure to have come down.

First time in my life I'm
ashamed of my profession.

We never should have put up those
40-story monstrosities. Not here.


What's the matter?

The door's out of line.

It wasn't before that
aftershock a few minutes ago.


Don't be scared.

We'll be feelin' those quivers
for days, the C.O. said.

That looks great. A pretty girl
ought to have nice things.

I've always thought so.

Hey, you gotta forget about
the way it used to be.

Your brother
could be dead.

Nobody left but me
to take care of you.

Well, I've got another
brother in San Francisco.

And he's in the Mafia.

HANK: There's another
car coming, Jody.

This area's quarantined.
You'll have to detour.

I'm a police officer. We're
transporting injured people.

This is an emergency.

What isn't
after an earthquake?

Go back or take them
to a Hare Krishna temple.

Lew, help me.
He's nuts! Crazy.

What the hell are you doing?
I know this kid.


She's under detention.

Take it easy.
All right.


Go back
the way you came.


JODY: Move out!

ROSA: Don't leave me
with him! Lew!

Lew! Help me!

Lew, help me!


I'm going for an officer.
That guy in there is cracked.

Come on.
Hey, come on.

Pull up
another hundred feet.

Pull it around
the corner and stop.

Nuts, am I, huh?


You got your nerve. Only a whore
would wear something like that.


SLADE: Rosa!

Let's go.

Better not.



Come on, Rosa. Come on.
Settle down, will you, huh?

Earthquakes bring out the worst
in some guys, that's all.

Here. Come on.

Here, look.
Look what you got.

Look at what you got
to take care of.

by a ruptured gas main.


Total evacuation
is under way.

My brother told me you were
a strange kind of cop.

...dozens of weakened structures
collapsed when the aftershock hit.

The worst disaster
was the four-year-old,

supposedly earthquake-proof,
Wilson Plaza.

The Army Corps of Engineers is
rushing all available workers

and equipment
to the scene.

Stand by for
further bulletins.


Oh, my God.

Inspector! Inspector!


Hold it. Stop.
You can't go any farther.

SLADE: I'm a police officer,
transporting injured people.

Okay. Come on.

I'm sorry, lady,
now you can't go...

Officer. I've got to get to...
Stay back.

No, it's urgent.
Listen. Listen.

Mr. Graff,
they're still down there.

Remy and Mr. Royce. Denise, too.
She asked for you.

Where were they
in the building?

The third level below.

Come on.

COLONEL: I agree.

There's a chance people could still
be alive in the sub-basements.

It'll take days to
unearth all this debris.

Look, the air supply can't
last more than a few hours.

I know the design
of this building.

I've been through
it a hundred times.

The basement extends clear out
to the street on this side.

If the storm drain
runs down deep enough,

all you'd have
to tunnel through

is a couple of layers of
concrete and a few feet of dirt.

I got radio word
a few minutes ago,

that the Hollywood reservoir
dam is disintegrating.

We're on high ground here, but
those drains are 40 feet down.

Believe me, if the dam goes,
they'll fill up in minutes.

Dams have lasted for weeks
with major breeches in them.

It's too dangerous to try. Besides, the
sewers must've cracked around like whips.

You know, the eastern
approach is totally blocked.

Yeah, well,
what about the other end?

Well, I was just gonna call up an
inspection team. Come and see for yourself.

Let's go.

Make way, fellas.

where are you going?

I'm going with them.

Let's have a look.

Can't you get
through here?

We don't know how far
this opening runs.

You haven't checked?

FOREMAN: My men stay here.

That could cave in
any second!

Hey, you know
as well as I do,

the chances are a hundred to one, that
everybody in that building is dead.


Holy mother!

I got through.


Can you get me a jackhammer
and a bolt cutter?

You use a jackhammer in
there, the roof'll fall in.

Look. I think there's some
people alive in there,

and I'm gonna try
and get 'em out.

Well, nobody else is. And
you can't do it all alone.

Yeah, I won't be alone.
He's coming with me.

Make sure they don't
turn on the compressor

for this hammer
until we signal.


Any word from the dam?

The last radio report we had, said
no further cracks had appeared.


Hey, you sure I can't talk
you out of this insanity?

(SCOFFS) Colonel,
I really wish you could.

Good luck.

Watch your head.

GRAFF: Keep it coming!

I've paced it off.

We ought to break through right
about the third basement level.

This thing ready?

SLADE: All right. The pressure's ready.
Hold on.

MAN: I'm getting
outta here.

ASSISTANT: Inspector! Inspector!
Get the hell outta here!

It's breaking up.
Get out!


Get out. It's breaking up!
Get out!

Should be a couple of feet of earth
then just the basement wall.

Hand me that light.



We're through!

MAN 1: Oh, my God!

MAN 2: They're through!
We're saved!


Anybody in there?

VANCE: About 70 of us.


Got it.


Come on, let's go.

Be careful of the loose
area down there.

Easy. Easy. Easy.

Careful of the loose
stuff down there.



WOMAN: No, not again.

It stopped.
It stopped.

Take it easy and watch your head
down below. I got you.l got you.



Take your time and watch it down there.
That stuff is all loose.

MAN 1: Give us
a hand down here.

MAN 2: Straight up.
Straight up.


SLADE: Nice and easy.


That's all of them.
Let's go.


MAN: Watch it.
Don't panic now.


GRAFF: Women first!

Come on, come on,
come on, come on.

There's lots of time.

SLADE: Take it easy.
Take it easy.

GRAFF: Take it easy. One at a time.
Women first.

Take it easy.
Take it easy.

Don't panic.


Go on, Remy.




Lew! Lew!

This used to be a hell
of a town, Officer.