Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Atomic Café

"The Atomic Café is an acclaimed documentary film about the beginnings of the era of nuclear warfare, created from a broad range of archival of film from the 1940s, 1950s and early 1960s - including newsreel clips, television news footage, U.S. government-produced films (including military training films), advertisements, television and radio programs. News footage reflected the prevailing understandings of the media and public.

The film was produced over a five-year period through the collaborative efforts of three directors: Jayne Loader, and brothers Kevin and Pierce Rafferty. The filmmakers opted to not use narration and instead they deploy carefully constructed sequences of film clips to make their points. The soundtrack utilizes atomic-themed songs from the Cold War-era to underscore the themes of the film.

Though the topic of atomic holocaust is a grave matter, the film approaches it with black humor. Much of the humor derives from the modern audience's reaction to the old training films, such as the Duck and Cover film shown in schools.

The film was released in April 1982. Its release coincided with a peak in the international disarmament movement, and the film received much wider distribution than was the norm for politically-oriented documentaries. It rapidly became a cult classic, and greatly influenced documentary filmmaking." Wikipedia

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