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The War Game (Peter Watkins, 1965)
Peter Watkins’ highly controversial speculative documentary on the (possible) effects of nuclear war on Britain is a terrifying work of genius, stunningly precise and convincing in the way it realistically looks at causes and effects of a Soviet nuclear attack on Great Britain: from a political, logistical and institutional perspective, but mostly in terms of human loss and societal collapse caused by radiation poisoning, third-degree burns, mental disintegration, food shortage, etc. Photographed in harrowing black & white, Watkins economic vision of this post-apocalyptic Britain will recall war photojournalism, except in a darker, moving form that takes the viewer close to the horror of a fire storm, executions and radioactivity-related illnesses, to name a few. Too bleak and critical of Britain’s arm race agenda of the time, it was withdrawn from the air by the BBC but also won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature in 1966.

The War Game (Peter Watkins, 1965)

Peter Watkins’ highly controversial speculative documentary on the (possible) effects of nuclear war on Britain is a terrifying work of genius, stunningly precise and convincing in the way it realistically looks at causes and effects of a Soviet nuclear attack on Great Britain: from a political, logistical and institutional perspective, but mostly in terms of human loss and societal collapse caused by radiation poisoning, third-degree burns, mental disintegration, food shortage, etc. Photographed in harrowing black & white, Watkins economic vision of this post-apocalyptic Britain will recall war photojournalism, except in a darker, moving form that takes the viewer close to the horror of a fire storm, executions and radioactivity-related illnesses, to name a few. Too bleak and critical of Britain’s arm race agenda of the time, it was withdrawn from the air by the BBC but also won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature in 1966.

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