Japan Release: 1980
Running Time:
156 minutes


Japanese Title

[Fukkatsu no Hi]

Distributor: Production:

Kadokawa / TBS

The Neried, a British submarine, arrives in the waters of a decimated Tokyo. Japanese scientist Shuzo Yoshizumi looks over the readout of his destroyed home town. He recalls how it happened, going back to the year 1982. This marked the creation of pathogenic viral strain called MM-88. The virus, created in secret by the United States, was stolen by the East German communists. Realizing the risks present, the US government sends in a group of covert agents to recover the virus. Although they obtain the virus, they miscalculate while trying to escape undetected. This results in their plane crashing due to the low altitude in the mountains. The impact sends the vial with the virus shattering into a nearby rock, exposing it to the open air. Before long, the virus begins to kill live stock in countries. It mutates to take human hosts, causing an epidemic in Italy that gives it the name the "Italian flu". In just a few months, the virus spreads to global levels. In the end, the virus wipes out almost all humanity. The only survivors are a group of 863 located in Antarctica, members from bases for various world nations. They are spared as the virus cannot survive in the cold temperature. There troubles are far from over, though...

Live Action Science FictionDisaster

Box Office - Stock Footage - DVDs - CDs - Pictures - Background - Concept Art - Cut Scenes - Reviews


International Title


Initial US Title

US Distributor: Boardwood Productions (-) / Time: 108 minutes

Alternate Titles

Day of Resurrection
[Literal Translation]

Last Refuge: Antarctica
[Italian Title]

Aliens, SDF & Misc.



Directed by Kinji Fukasaku
Writing credits Koji Takada, Kinji Fukasaku, Sakyo Komatsu, Gregory Knapp
Produced by Ken Fujiyama, Haruki Kadokawa
Music by Kentaro Haneda, Teo Macero, Janis Ian
Cinematography by Daisaku Kimura
Film Editing by Akira Suzuki
Production Design by Yoshinaga Yoko
Assistant Director Masaaki Tezuka, Kazuo Yoshida, Ken Fujiyama
Shuzo Yoshizumi, Doctor Masao Kusakari
Carter, Major Bo Svenson
Marit Olivia Hussey
Barkley Robert Vaughn
MacCloud, Captain Chuck Connors
Richardson, President Glenn Ford
Conway, Admiral George Kennedy
Garland, General Henry Silva
Sarah Baker Stephanie Faulkner
Mayer, Doctor Stuart Gillard
Latour, Doctor Cec Linder
Nakanishi, Commander Isao Natsuyagi
Ollich, Doctor Eve Crawford
Tsuchiya, Professor Ken Ogata
Yamauchi, Doctor Sonny Chiba
Noriko, Nurse Yumi Takigawa
Akimasa Matsuo Toshiyuki Nagashima
Tsuchiya, Professor Ken Ogata
Lopez, Captain Edward James Olmos
Yasuo Tatsuno Tsunehiko Watase
Ryuji Sanazawa Kensaku Morita
Borodinov, Doctor Chris Wiggins
Nevsky, Captain John Evans
Showa Station Team Members Haruki Kadokawa, Tadashi Takatsuki, Takeshige Hatanaka, Chikara Gonoue, Eiji Yuki
Palmer Station Radio Operator Nicholas Campbell
Palmer Station Secretaries Julie Khaner, Danielle Schneider, Laura Pennington, Diane Lasko, Patricia Rego
Nurses Tayori Hinatsu, Keiko Ito, Tomoko Igarashi, Sachiko Sato


Box Office

Release Date: June 26th, 1980 (Japan)
Budget: ¥2,500,000,000 / $11,000,000 (Japan, Rough Figure)
Distribution Earning: ¥2,400,000,000 / $11,500,000 (Japan, Rough Figure)
Total: ¥3,600,000,000 / $17,000,000 (Japan, Rough Figure)

DVDs and Blu-rays

United States Region 1 Virus Echo Bridge (2001) Order
United States Region 1 Virus Diamond Entertainment (2003) Order
United States Region 1 Classic Disaster Movies American Home Treasures (2003) Order
United States Region 1 Sonny Chiba Action Pack BCI (2006) Order
United States Region 1 Virus Reel Classic Films (2007) Order
United States Region 1 Virus Reel Classic Films (2008) Order
Japan Region 2 Day of Resurrection Kadokawa (2002)
United States Region 0 Virus Moonstone Pictures (2001)
United States Region 0 Virus Miracle Pictures (2002)

CD Soundtracks


Background and Trivia

  • Interestingly, the soundtrack was submitted to the US copyright office before the movie itself. The first soundtrack was under application PA0000103271 using the title: Teo Macero presents Impressions of "Virus". This is an early, three track record featuring music from Teo Macero and Janis Ian. The second soundtrack, filed on the same day on February 9th, 1981, was under PA0000103272 using the title: Symphonic Suite "Virus". A third soundtrack was also filed, also on the same day, under PA0000103273 using just the title Virus.

    As for the movie itself, it's unclear who was the first to submit it due to the common name of the film. On August 30th, 1982, United Artists submitted a huge application that included 11,069 titles. This was under V1933P375 and included a movie called Virus, although no additional details are listed and it's unclear if this is the same movie. For sure the movie was submitted by May 26th, 1983, when Media Home Entertainment, who would release it on VHS, submitted an application under V2006P068. This was for a Virus motion picture. However, no additional details are listed but was done jointly with Western Horizon Television. Later on November 11th, 1983, Media Home Entertainment submitted another application, jointly with Broadwood Productions, under V2020P263. Broadwood Productions would be the one to release the movie in US theaters, and notes the date of execution between these companies for the rights took place on August 10th 1983.
  • Based on a 1964 novel by Sakyo Komatsu of the same name, Day of Resurrection. The novel differs in a couple of ways from the movie. Probably the biggest difference is around the virus itself, though. In the novel it originates from space, as the microorganism was collected from an American astronaut after a mission. It is then worked on as a bio-weapon dubbed as MM-88, short for "Martian Murderer". In the movie, the virus keeps the MM-88 name, but it's never elaborated what it stands for while the space angle, if it even exists in the film, isn't brought up at all. The virus is also not nicknamed the Italian Flu, as in the movie, but briefly as the Tibetan Flu. The climax is also different between sources. In the novel, two teams go to try and stop the nuclear weapons from detonating: one to the United States and the other to the Soviet Union. This is possible because the HMS Nereid does not destroy submarine T232, like it does in the movie, because the crew is not infected with the virus. In the end the US team is still unsuccessful, but it ends up that Antartica was not hit like the Soviet survivors expected, either thanks to their team's efforts or misinformation that it was targeted in the first place. This leaves considerably more people alive at the end of the story, even more so as in the novel there are 10,000 survivors originally at Antartica versus the 863 in the movie.
  • A movie adaptation was considered as early as 1965 by Toho, as noted in the Day of Resurrection lost project.
  • Directors John Michael Frankenheimer, who did The Manchurian Candidate, and George Pan Cosmatos, who went on to direct Rambo: First Blood Part II, were both offered the chance to direct the movie. They both, however, turned down the opportunity. Noted in SF Soul (ISBN 4106101769).
  • Actor George Kennedy was paid $40,000 for his work on the film while Edward James Olmos was paid $20,000. Noted in Age of the Gods (self-published).


J.L. Carrozza Star Rating
May 7, 2006