The Atomic Café
1982, Kevin Rafferty, Jayne Loader, and Pierce Rafferty, USA, 86 min.
- Fri, Sep 21st 6:00pm
- Sun, Sep 23rd 5:30pm
- Wed, Sep 26th 8:00pm
"Both bitterly funny and heart-stoppingly upsetting...THE ATOMIC CAFE feels suddenly, enragingly relevant again." - Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice
"A must-see for any student of modern American history or any fan of irony-laden social commentary." - Thom, eFilmCritic.com
Artfully culled from newsreel footage, government archives, and pop-culture artifacts (cocktails, fashions, cartoons, jukebox songs, etc.), THE ATOMIC CAFE is a mind-boggling compendium of misinformation that was aimed at selling nuclear war to the postwar American public like a new brand of laundry detergent. As singing Polynesians are evacuated from Bikini Atoll and Burt the Turtle tells schoolchildren how to "Duck and Cover," public officials promote a devil-may-care attitude toward the dangers of nuclear attack and radioactive fallout. This groundbreaking, often-imitated documentary created a sensation when first released in 1982; now, with fake news in ascendancy, and the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists famous Doomsday Clock set at its furthest point (two minutes to midnight) since 1953, it seems as timely as ever. New 4K DCP digital restoration. (MR)
Sunday 9/23: At 4:30 pm, all ticket holders are invited to a reception in the Gallery/Cafe before the 5:30 screening. Filmmaker Jayne Loader will be joined by Rachel Bronson, president & CEO of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and Stephen Schwartz, non-resident senior fellow of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, for a discussion immediately following the screening.