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There was this movie I remember watching as a kid. I imagine it was probably some made for TV or b movie, but maybe not.

Anyway there was some kind of Armageddon event where everyone on earth died (they might have vanished actually), except for the people who died at the precise moment of this Armageddon moment.

I think I recall the main character was fighting someone in a river and was being drowned, and that's why he "died" and thus "lived".

He figures it all out and in the end manages to get back. Maybe it was a parallel universe he went into. I don't know.

That's all I can remember.

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Sounds like The Quiet Earth, NZ 1985.

Zac Hobson wakes up to find that he is apparently the only person left on Earth. Soon, however, he meets others - Joanne, a pretty young woman, and Api, a huge Maori tribesman. They survived the apocalypse (a malfunction of a government project in which Zac was involved) because all three were at the moment of death--Zac's attempted suicide, Joanne's exploding hair dryer, Api fighting with another man--when the apocalypse occurred. Soon, however, Zac and Api begin fighting over Joanne, and the trouble begins

IMDB ... Written by Anonymous

He enters his underground laboratory; a monitor displays the message "Project Flashlight Complete". The mass disappearance seems to coincide with the moment Flashlight was activated. He notes on his tape recorder: "Zac Hobson, July 5th. One: there has been a malfunction in Project Flashlight with devastating results. Two: it seems I am the only person left on Earth."

...

at the instant of The Effect, they were all at the moment of death—Api was being drowned in a fight, Joanne was electrocuted by a faulty hairdryer, and Zac had overdosed on pills in a suicide attempt. He had realized there were serious dangers with the experiment and was guilt-ridden for not speaking out.

Wikipedia

There is also a Youtube-Version of the film. The scene you remember is starting at minute 56:55

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Awesome thanks :) –  monkjack Jul 16 '13 at 6:53

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