Overkill - Through hell to eternity

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German title Overkill - Through hell to eternity
Original title 復活 の 日
Country of production Japan
original language Japanese , English
Publishing year 1980
length 156 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director Kinji Fukasaku
script Kinji Fukasaku
Kōji Takada
Gregory Knapp
production Haruki Kadokawa
music Kentarō Haneda
Janis Ian
Teo Macero
camera Daisaku Kimura
cut Akira Suzuki

Overkill - Through Hell to Eternity (Original title: Fukkatsu no hi ; also known under the English title Virus ) is a Japanese disaster film from 1980. It was directed by Kinji Fukasaku and is based on the novel The Day of the Resurrection of Sakyō Komatsu .

The cinema release in Germany was on May 13, 1982.


In 1982, on behalf of the US military, scientists developed the MM-88, a highly dangerous virus that could theoretically destroy the world. A sample of this killer virus disappears without a trace and ends up in East Germany with a scientist named Dr. Krause. He entrusts himself to a group of Swiss who offer to bring the virus to a researcher in Switzerland so that he can develop a vaccine. But the men turn out to be American secret agents who have received an order from their government to bring the MM-88 back to the USA as quickly as possible . While Dr. Krause falls victim to an attack by East German soldiers, the agents with the virus in their luggage manage to escape by plane. But the plane crashes in the Alps and the deadly contents can escape.

Just a month later, the first cases related to the pathogen being released occurred in Italy , and shortly afterwards the disease known as "Italian flu" spreads into a pandemic. US President Richardson and his staff do not know what to do because they have no idea what the flu, which originated in Italy, is and do not have any effective vaccines. Because the situation is becoming more and more confusing and chaotic, the mad chief of staff General Garland recommends that the president get the nuclear missiles ready for launch , fearing that the Soviet Union could take advantage of the current situation and launch a nuclear attack on the USA, which Richardson rejects outraged. Meanwhile, people are dying by the thousands, soon there will be millions, humanity seems to be facing total annihilation, because nothing and no one seems to be able to stop the virus. When the fight against the epidemic seems to be finally lost, one of Richardson's senators still sees a chance that someone will survive the epidemic: the researchers in Antarctica, as the virus behaves passively at extremely low temperatures. The President immediately gets in touch with Admiral Conway's researchers. He enlightened them about the current situation and made it clear to them that the future of humanity now lies entirely with them and dies shortly afterwards. Garland, now completely insane, then programs the US nuclear arsenal for automatic self-defense and dies too.

Meanwhile, Admiral Conway has called the representatives of the various nations to a meeting at the American research station Palmer , where a new government, the Antarctic Council, is being formed. After initial difficulties, the survivors, consisting of 855 men and eight women, manage to adapt to the new environment, and when the first offspring appear a year later, the survival of mankind seems to be assured. But one day the Japanese seismologist Yoshizumi makes a terrible discovery: Washington is facing a major earthquake, which will trigger a nuclear strike in the United States. That would result in a massive counter-attack by the Soviet Union and one of these missiles is aimed at Palmer Station, of all places. So Yoshizumi and Major Carter decide to travel to Washington on the British nuclear submarine Nereid to prevent the worst. But their attempt fails, and the whole world perishes in an atomic firestorm. Yoshizumi, who miraculously survived the disaster, then wanders through the wasteland for years in the hope of meeting other survivors.


With a budget of 16 million dollars, Virus (international title) was the most expensive feature film in Japan at the time. But the great success that producer Haruki Kadokawa had hoped for did not materialize: the 156-minute catastrophic epic was in Japan despite its enormous effort and its considerable star cast (including western legend Glenn Ford, Bo Svenson, Olivia Hussey, George Kennedy, Chuck Connors and Henry Silva) a flop.

Originally, John Frankenheimer was supposed to direct. Because this was not available, however, Kinji Fukasaku, who became famous through many yakuza films, took over the direction.

For the international markets the film was shortened from 156 minutes to 108 minutes. The scenes that shed more light on the prehistory of the Japanese Antarctic crew were mainly omitted. For the post-production was William R. Kowalchuk junior responsible. But even in this greatly shortened version, the film was denied major successes.

DVD release

On September 18, 2008, the film was released for the first time on DVD in Germany under the title Apocalypse - The End of the World . This version has a running time of 113 minutes and, unlike previous publications, is based on the original Japanese version.


The Lexicon of International Films wrote: “The disaster film, which was obviously shot for Japanese television, does not get lost in spectacular action scenes and tendentious black-and-white painting, but rather appears pseudo-documentary. However, over long stretches it seems cumbersome, talkative and only moderately exciting. "

The cinema magazine Cinema judged: "Impressive recordings, tricks ok, dreary told."

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Overkill - Through hell to eternity. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed March 2, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used