Cavern The (1964): Edgar Ulmer’s Last Movie, WWII Melodrama

Edgar G. Ulmer’s last film as a director was The Cavern, a WWII melodrama, starring John Saxon and Italian star Rosanna Schiaffino.

Set in Italy circa 1944, this claustrophobic feature is set within a cave, in which both enemies and strangers are stranded together.  Tensions rise due to the severe conditions and short supply of food, and soon interpersonal conflicts and sheer madness threaten to destroy them all.

A title card informs that the epilogue occurs “187 Days Later,” and there is a ray of hope, when one older member volunteers to sacrifice his life, so that the rest can get out of the darkness and into the light.

John Saxon as Joe Cramer
Rosanna Schiaffino as Anna
Brian Aherne as Gen. Braithwaite
Larry Hagman as Capt. Wilson
Peter Marshall as Lt. Peter Carter
Nino Castelnuovo as Mario Scognamiglio
Hans von Borsody as Oberlt. Hans Beck
Joachim Hansen as German Sergeant