5.0/10
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38 user 17 critic

The Story of Mankind (1957)

The devil and the spirit of mankind argue as to whether or not humanity is ultimately good or evil.

Director:

Irwin Allen

Writers:

Irwin Allen (screenplay), Charles Bennett (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Although Peter and Kimani grew up together, Kimani soon finds that different races are treated differently. After Kimani's father is jailed for following tribal customs, Kimani joins a band... See full summary »

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Stars: Rock Hudson, Dana Wynter, Wendy Hiller
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronald Colman ... The Spirit of Man
Hedy Lamarr ... Joan of Arc
Groucho Marx ... Peter Minuit
Harpo Marx ... Sir Isaac Newton
Chico Marx ... Monk
Virginia Mayo ... Cleopatra
Agnes Moorehead ... Queen Elizabeth I
Vincent Price ... Mr. Scratch - The Devil
Peter Lorre ... Nero
Charles Coburn ... Hippocrates
Cedric Hardwicke ... High Judge
Cesar Romero ... Spanish Envoy
John Carradine ... Pharaoh Khufu
Dennis Hopper ... Napoleon Bonaparte
Marie Wilson ... Marie Antoinette
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Storyline

The council of elders of outer space is deliberating on a very important subject: Must mankind be allowed to survive, or is it so esentially evil that it must be destroyed? A devil and an angel act as prosecutor and defense for the human race, and the movie presents in a very interesting way a series of episodes of the human history. What will be the final veredict? Innocent, or Guilty? Written by Jose Beltran-Escavy <pepe@prince.pe.u-tokyo.ac.jp>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Story of Men and Their Women From the Beginning of Creation! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 November 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La historia de la humanidad See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cambridge Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film uses a great deal of stock footage from earlier movies, including Land of the Pharaohs (1955) and Helen of Troy (1956). See more »

Goofs

Sir Isaac Newton published his famous paper outlining the law of gravity in 1666, but in the sequence in which Harpo Marx plays Newton he performs on the harp Stephen Foster's song "Beautiful Dreamer," written in 1864 -- almost two centuries later. See more »

Quotes

Peter Minuit: Now, this is my final offer, 24 dollars and not a penny more.
Indian Chief: Robbery! White man rob poor injun.
Peter Minuit: So, you think you're being robbed, eh? Be glad its not 300 years later. You might have been wiped out in the stock market. Now, is it a deal or isn't it?
Indian Chief: Robbery!
Peter Minuit: That's quite true, but, eh, is it a deal or isn't it?
Indian Chief: Deal.
See more »

Connections

Edited from The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex (1939) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A comedy? A Drama? It's a dog, But it's like car wreck. You can't take your eyes off it!
17 September 2006 | by gleetroySee all my reviews

I saw this film on a late, late show on television a long time ago (pre-cable, if you van believe that!) It was impossible to follow the plot. Was there one? The fun is in spotting the famous actors doing bits.

Groucho, Chico, Harpo. The best reason to watch any movie. Together, they would have been more of a hoot!

Irwin Allen loves these all-star studded set pieces but believe me, The Towering Inferno was "toweringly" better!

Most didn't make sense and most seem disjointed, but if it comes on late night again, I'll be there! Can't take my eyes off it!


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