After you have watched Peter Watkins disturbing vision of a limited nuclear attack on Kent towns in the south of England could you please tell me why some idiots still want to preserve our nuclear weaponry? Maybe people think there safe because Trident is based in Scotland and not on the Thames, something you should remember that could easily change.
Made in 1965, commissioned by the BBC following the success of Culloden, but banned from TV screens for 20 years, which in it self smells of a conspiracy between the government and the BBC. I would be the first to admit that it’s a very hard watch but that’s no excuse not the to show this very important documentary style movie which is even more relevant today within 2018’s political atmosphere. Perhaps we ‘the public’ could not be trusted with such a horrifying scenario that when a nuclear war takes place we would all die, and not always very quickly and certainly in pain.
In 1966 it was decided to educate the Establishment with a number of private screenings at the National Film Theatre in London but still the mass population was kept well away. That was until public pressure and a parliamentary motion led to U-turn and the film was granted a limited release via the British Film Institute.
Peter Watkins received no monetary reward from the eventual wider distribution of the film or from its subsequent DVD release even though it did win the Academy Award for the Best Documentary Feature in 1967.
Watkins film is not an historical artifact and should not be viewed as such, its a warning given out in the 1960’s for what could happen anytime in the future if the authoritarian establishment don’t get their act together - and it certainly doesn’t look that their going too any time soon.