Thu Apr 13th, 2006 at 04:31:08 AM EST
movies, for fun, while we can. I hope this will be a good introduction to the nuclear scare for youngsters here too.
1. On the Beach (1959)
One of the most frightening movies I ever saw as a kid; in fact, it ranked second only to Godzilla. I remember my mother wept (although I don't know if she liked the Ava Gardner/Gregory Peck melodrama or the story). The most horrifying scene to me was the empty SF street seen from the periscope of the nuclear sub. Also shocking was the scene of the empty plaza at Melbourne with the sign "There Is Still Time." Yes, there was, back in 1959. This movie will live on, with the tune of Waltzing Matilda.
2. Sekai Daisenso (World War) (1961)
I saw this Japanese movie on television. Some of the storyline was freely copied from On the Beach. But the scene of the main character (a tax driver) shouting from his home that his kid would go to college no matter what happens tomorrow is moving. (I think the actor really meant it.)
3. Dr. Strangelove (1964)
A knock-out masterpiece, as most of you would agree. I wasn't old enough to see this movie real time. We were only 2 years out of the Cuban missile crisis and this was too vivid. For trivia lovers, watch carefully the nuclear blast scenes at the ending. There are a few footages of the Bikini experiments. You can see a few navy vessels under the mushroom cloud. They are former Japanese navy vessels to guage the impact, and one battleship Nagato was reputed to have withstood a blast, to the pride of a young Japanese military fan (who grew up to be an anti-war teenager, and later to a pro-America realist, and then...).
4. Planet of the Apes (1968)
The ending of the remake follows the original story, while this one knocks you out. Unfortunately, a classmate of mine spoiled my pleasure telling the ending to everyone.
OK, it's your turn.