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1906 Earthquake Centennial Alliance

Activities & Events

65 Seconds that Shook the Earth (film series)

University of California, Berkeley, Pacific Film Archive

This Pacific Film Archive (PFA) film series features a lecture by historian Gray Brechin, aided by archival footage of the '06 earthquake loaned by the Library of Congress, a rare screening of FLAME OF BARBARY COAST starring John Wayne, experimental mediaworks by artists dealing with natural disasters, the 1957 B-movie THE NIGHT THE WORLD EXPLODED, and a special, enhanced presentation of the 1974 epic disaster film, EARTHQUAKE.

Dates and Details:
Thursday, April 6, 2006 - Artistic Disasters: Works by George Kuchar, Christina McPhee, Dolissa Medina, Bill Morrison, and Semiconductor (Free Screening!)
Artists commandeer nature's ineluctable forces-fire, flood, and tectonic turmoil.

Friday, April 7, 2006 - Earthquake
Super Sensurround Simulation by Meyer Sound! Charlton Heston, Ava Gardner, George Kennedy, and Geneviève Bujold are among the victims of a massive temblor that devastates Los Angeles in the first and greatest of the Sensurround spectacles. Our presentation will rock the theater with waves of bodacious bass. Are you ready to rumble?

Saturday, April 8, 2006 - Disaster at Dawn: San Francisco and the Great Quake of '06
Illustrated lecture by Gray Brechin. San Francisco historian Brechin will guide us through the debris-strewn devastation of post-quake San Francisco, presenting a rare collection of archival footage recorded while the fires still raged.

Saturday, April 8, 2006 - Flame of Barbary Coast
Love's a disaster: cowboy John Wayne pursues Ann Dvorak, the darling of the San Francisco demimonde, until that earth-shattering day in April '06. “The most edifying screen cataclysm since the Barbary Coast was razed in Metro's San Francisco.” - N.Y. Times

Sunday, April 9, 2006 - The Night the World Exploded
Peggy Hellweg in Person. A massive quake in Los Angeles sets off a series of global seizures in this late-fifties disaster epic. Our guest from the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory will examine the film's faulty science.

More information »


Film series runs from April 6 - April 9, 2006 at the following times:

Thursday, April 6, 2006 at 5:30 pm
Artistic Disasters

Friday, April 7, 2006 at 8 pm

Saturday, April 8, 2006 at 7 pm
Disaster at Dawn: San Francisco and the Great Quake of '06

Saturday, April 8, 2006 at 8:45 pm
Flame of Barbary Coast

Sunday, April 9, 2006 at 6 pm
The Night the World Exploded


Pacific Film Archive Theater
2575 Bancroft Way (1 block east of Telegraph Ave)
Berkeley, CA 94720-2250


This series offers an opportunity to see unusual 35mm newsreel footage shot soon after the quake, as well as seldom seen films focused on seismic events, such as FLAME OF BARBARY COAST. After the screening of the 1957 B-movie THE NIGHT THE WORLD EXPLODED, seismologist Peggy Hellweg will talk about the questionable science.


General public. Admission fee.


Anuj Vaidya, (510) 642-6883

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