White light black rain : the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
- Hida, Shuntaro.
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About this work
Using a mixture of archival and up-to-date footage, this documentary film shows the effects of nucleur warfare on the Japanese people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki following the drop of atomic bombs by the US on August 6 and 9 1945. The film begins by visiting Hiroshima as it is today, where young people interviewed on the streets have little knowledge of what happened in 1945. Survivors of the attack tell their stories, recounting what they remember from the day and describing how its after-effects have shaped their lives since. The film includes footage from US propoganda films proclaiming the threat to the Western world of the Japanese people. US military staff from Enola Gay describe their role in the detonation of the atomic bombs; they talk about what they saw when the bombs fell. Next, survivors of the Nagasaki bomb recount their memories of the day the atomic bomb hit their city. Photographs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki one day after the bomb had fallen are included. The aftermath of the bomb is covered with extensive footage of the wounds sustained by survivors and a discussion of the effects of radiation sickness. Some of the survivors still living show how their scars have healed. In 1947 the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) was established to study 100 000 survivors; since the bomb was dropped a further 160 000 people have died from radiation-induced cancer. Furthermore the off-spring of survivors are also likely to be susceptible to cancer and may find it hard to start their own families if the history of radiation sickness is known about. Most of all the survivors live in a state of post-traumatic stress disorder, unable to get the day of the bombings out of their minds or to forget the loss of the people they loved.