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The Show

One Million B.C.

Series info on UEN-TV

In the 1940 version of "One Million Years B.C.", successful dinosaur hunter Tumak (Victor Mature) is scorned and betrayed by the leader of his brutal tribe, Akhoba (Lon Chaney). Ejected from the Stone Tribe, Tumak is taken in by the peaceful Shell Tribe, and boy, is this ever a culture shock for Tumak. In direct opposition to Rock Tribe customs, the Shell Tribe feeds their children, women and elderly first and nobody has to fight over food. Tutored by Loana (Carole Landis) and her friends, Tumak eventually learns how to share, how to find food from trees, and even how to laugh.

Yet life isn't all smooth waters for the Shells. Giant beasts who like the taste of home sapiens roam the land and the volcanoes are busy. Fortunately, Tumak is on hand with his tough Stone Tribe skills, and shows the Shells that a spear can bring down more than just fish. Ultimately, the two tribes are combined, sharing their strengths to improve survival for all.

The film was nominated for an Academy Awards for Best Special Effects. It lost to "Gone With The Wind", but the clever disguising of a pig as a tiny triceratops and an epic battle between a pair of giant lizard things are just two highlights from a film that depicts Stone Age civilization concurrent with the time of dinosaurs.

The Science

Kenneth Carpenter

Kenneth CarpenterKenneth Carpenter, of the Utah State University Eastern Prehistoric Museum, discusses paleontology, cave-dwellers and the scientific errors in the 1940 film “One Million B.C.”

 

More Science to go with the Show

Related Resources

Kenneth Carpenter

Careers in Paleontology

Prehistoric Museum - Utah State University Eastern

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