Welcome to the 12th International Uranium Film Festival Rio de Janeiro, Modern Art Museum (MAM Rio) Cinematheque, May 18 - 28, 2023
05/18 Thursday - Opening
USA, 2023, Directed by Mark Shapiro and Douglas Brian Miller. Executive Producers Matthew Modine and Adam Rackoff.
Written by Warren Etheredge and Mark Shapiro. Featuring Martin Sheen, Claudia Peterson, Ian Zabarte, Patrick Wayne, Mary Dickson,
Lewis Black, Joseph Musso and Michael Douglas. Documentary, 95 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
Hiroshima. Nagasaki. Mercury, Nevada? The latter was the site for the testing of 928 large-scale nuclear weapons from 1951 to 1992. The Nevada Test Site is located in Mercury, 65 miles from Las Vegas. Over the 41 years of testing at the Nevada Test Site, 100 atomic bombs were detonated above ground from airplanes, towers, cannons and balloons; 828 tests were conducted underground. Downwind of the test site in the 1950s, a number of Hollywood blockbusters were filmed, including the Howard Hughes epic „The Conqueror“ with John Wayne and Susan Hayward. Although „The Conqueror“ location site, in St. George, Utah, was more than 100 miles away, the radiation levels there were so high that when Wayne tested them with a Geiger counter he thought the equipment was broken. The film „Downwind“ tells the stories of people harmed by the radioactive fallout from the Nevada Test Site. Half the cast and crew involved with „The Conqueror“, shot in 1954 allegedly died of causes connected to the toxic fallout. They were the most high-profile victims of the atomic testing at the Nevada Test Site, which contaminated land, water and people. Martin Sheen narrates this harrowing exposé of the United States' disregard for everyone living downwind. www.backlotdocs.com
After the film Q & A with special guest Libbe HaLevy (Nuclear Hotseat) from Los Angeles.
05/19 Friday (On Nuclear Weapons)
United States, 2022, Director Brian Cowden, Production LABRATS,
Short Documentary, 30 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
How Far From Ground Zero shows the Nuclear Testing prgrams across the world and the impact on the indigenous communities, the veterans who took part and the civillians. This documentary is one of the most powerful ever produced to raise awareness of the testing program. About LABRATS: Millions were exposed to fallout from the atomic bomb tests and families suffer today from illness and deformities caused by the tests. We aim to provide information relating to the tests and expose the injustice of the Veterans who took part in the testing program. The participants of the testing program were lab rats or guinea pigs. Used in experiments to test the effects of Nuclear warfare, with no regard for the indigenous people, their lands or their lives. Veterans, indigenous people, scientists, civilians have all died as a consequence of the tests, yet their stories remain unheard by the general population of the world. LABRATS International gives these people a voice and allows their stories to be told. www.labrats.international
United Kingdom/Spain, 2022, Director Rakel Aguirre, Producers: Rakel Aguirre, Sebastián Thomas, Matrioshka Films,
Original Music: Jimena Martínez Sáez, Documentary, 69 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
Thalia is an artist and banner maker who, in the early 80s, joined a women-only peace camp to stand against nuclear weapons through non-violent action. 41 years ago, in the summer of 1981, a group of 36 women left their homes and marched from Cardiff, the capital of Wales, to Greenham Common near London to protest against the American Cruise missiles that were going to be deployed in the UK as part of the Cold War response. In fear of nuclear war, the group decided to stay and started a peace camp to protest against the storage of nuclear weapons at the base. The peace camp became women-only and soon transformed into a public space for women’s voices attracting hundreds of thousands of women over two decades. Thalia, one of the original marchers and activists at the camp, shares the untold story of the longest feminist protest in British history and reflects on how collective action changed the lives of thousands of women inspiring several generations. www.matrioshkafilms.com/films / Trailer: https://vimeo.com/800346293
After the film Q & A with special guests.
05/20 Saturday (About Chernobyl)
France/Germany/ Ukraine, 2022, Director Emi Dietrich, Documentary, 25 minutes, Russian/Ukrainian with Portuguese subtitles
Liquidators based in Borodyanka, Kharkiv and Ivankiv testify on their missions at the time of the Chernobyl disaster, the impact of radiations on their health, their situation nowadays and their views on nuclear power. Specialists bring their explanations. While some political leaders are today once again considering the development of nuclear power, its dangers are often forgotten or even hidden. This film gives voice to some survivors of Chernobyl liquidators based in Borodyanka, Kharkiv and Ivankiv. www.dietrich-media.com
Poland, 2022, Director: Amadeusz Kocan, Producer: Amadeusz Kocan & Krystian Machnik,
Feature Documentary, 60 minutes, Language: Polish, Russian, Ukrainian, with Portuguese subtitles
The film "Chernobyl: Men of steel" tells the story of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster from the point of view of the Samosely - the indigenous inhabitants of the villages depopulated by radioactive contamination. Not agreeing with the decision of the Soviet authorities, they returned to their villages, where they live out their days. There are only a few dozen of them left.
They are dying out along with the story that the world did not want to hear so far. Among them are people who did not know what radiation was, as well as those who were directly involved in helping the first victims of a nuclear reactor explosion. According to various estimates, there were initially between 1,600 and 3,000 of them, but only a few dozen have survived to this day.
These are very elderly people, cut off from stores, running water and sometimes even electricity.
Despite this, they persistently defend their land and their beliefs. www.xbestcinema.com
UK 2022, Director: James Jones, Producers: Serhiy Solodko and Sasha Odynova, Top Hat Productions in association with Sky Studios,
Executive Producer: Darren Kemp, Feature Documentary, 96 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
Thirty-six years after the Chernobyl nuclear reactor exploded in Soviet Ukraine, newly uncovered archival footage and recorded interviews with those who were present paint an emotional and gripping portrait of the extent and gravity of the disaster and the lengths to which the Soviet government went to cover up the incident, including the soldiers sent in to “liquidate” the damage. Chernobyl: The Lost Tapes is the full, unvarnished true story of what happened in one of the least understood tragedies of the twentieth century. Winner of Cinema Eye Honors Award; Royal Television Society Craft Award for Sound; Broadcast Tech Innovation Award for Best Audio Postproduction. ´www.tophat.tv - www.jonesfilms.net/chernobyl-thelosttapes - Trailer: https://vimeo.com/716822000
After the film Q & A with special guests.
05/21 Sunday (Films from India)
India, 1999, Director: Shri Prakash, Documentary, 52 minutes, Hindi-Santhali, English with Portuguese subtitles.
Jadugoda is a region in the state of Bihar populated by Adivasi (indigenous peoples of India). It first came into prominence when uranium deposits were discovered in the area, since Jadugoda is India's only underground uranium mine. The film documents the devastating effects of uranium mining by Uranium Corporation of India Limited in Jadugoda. For the last thirty years, the radioactive wastes have been just dumped into the rice fields of the Adivasis. The government agency mining the uranium makes no attempt to protect the lives of the people and environment of the area. The unsafe mining of uranium has resulted in excessive radiation which has led to genetic mutations and slow deaths. Medical reports reveal that the impact of radiation on the health of the indigenous population has already been devastating. The film is an attempt to record the tragedy that has played havoc with the lives of the people of Jadugoda - and it received several international awards: Earth-Vision International Film Festival, Tokyo, 2000 (Grand Prize), Thunder Bird Film Festival, USA, 2001 (Best Film Award), Earth-Vision Environmental Film Festival, CA, USA, 2002 (Runner-up) - www.shriprakash.com
India 2022, Director: Shishir Jha, Producers: Vinay Mishra, Pallavi Rohatgi, Preety Ali, Raghavan Bharadwaj, Shishir Jha, Mritunjay Jha,
Cast: Jagarnath Baskey, Mugli Baskey, Doc-Fiction, 97 minutes, Language: Santhali with Portuguese subtitles
Jadugoda, an uranium mining area in Jharkhand in India. A tribal couple cope with the loss of their daughter. For them, the land and forest are witness to their daughter’s memory. With great sensitivity and beauty, the film explores the deeply intertwined connections between tribal communities and the forest that is their traditional home. Deftly interweaving the vivid colours of their festivals, their folk songs and the sense of community that binds them together, Tortoise Under The Earth is a poetic elegy to a world that is rapidly disappearing, subsumed by unchecked development and displacement. Uranium mining in Jharkhand has been going on since 1980s resulting into huge displacement of Adivasis. Focusing on the loss and dispossession, 'Tortoise Under the Earth' looks at the entanglement of myth, memory and mining. Winner of the Vancouver International Film Festival 2022 - www.folkhousecinema.com/films / Trailer: https://vimeo.com/732352349
After the film Q & A with special guests.
05/24 Wednesday (Nuclear Weapons)
United States, 2022, Director Peter Kuran, Producer: Peter Kuran, Marilyn Nave, Jacqueline Zietlow,
Feature Documentary 90 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
How the deadliest bomb in the world almost came to be! J. Robert Oppenheimer was known as the father of the atomic bomb, Edward Teller was known as the father of the Hydrogen Bomb and Sam Cohen was known as the father of the Neutron Bomb. In the late 1950s, an idea was conceived of a bomb which would maximize damage to people, but minimize damage to buildings and vital infrastructure: perfect for an occupying army. This is the story of a man and his bomb. A melding of world events and scientific discovery inspire the motivations of the self-professed creator of the Neutron Bomb—one of the most-hated nuclear weapons ever invented. www.neutronbombmovie.com / trailer: https://www.journeyman.tv/film/8372
05/25 Thursday (Nuclear Energy)
Sweden, 2022, Directors David Hodge, Hi-jin Kang Hodge, Producer: The national museum of science and technology in Sweden,
New Story Space, Documentary, 34 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
Ågesta R3 is Sweden's first commercial nuclear plant operating between 1964 and 1974. It is being dismantled according to the Swedish nuclear industry practices for the clearance of material, rooms, buildings, and soil in accordance with the Swedish Nuclear Activities Act and the Swedish Radiation Protection Act. www.davidandhijin.com
Ireland, 2022, Director Frankie Fenton, Feature Documentary, 83 minutes, English with Portuguese subtitles
ATOMIC HOPE is a feature documentary, following a tiny global movement of unpopular pro-nuclear activists, who strongly believe we need nuclear power in order to decarbonize our energy systems, before catastrophic climate change occurs. Intimately filmed over a ten year period, these advocates for nuclear energy come from all over the world; from Japan to Switzerland, America to Australia. But these individual activists face clashes and opposition at every juncture. Nuclear meltdowns, costs, radiation fears and nuclear waste are just some of the very serious issues which traditional environmentalists have against this technology. www.atomichope.ie
After the film Q & A with guests.
05/26 Friday (Depleted Uranium Weapons)
Brazil/USA, 2015, 19 min, Director Miguel Silveira, Producer Missy Hernandez. Fiction, English with Portuguese Subtitles.
A troubled 14-years-old boy grows increasingly isolated as he obsesses over the circumstances surrounding his father death his descent puts him on a dismal and potentially violent course that will lead to major truths and even greater questions. His father was a Soldier at the Golf War. He died because he was contaminated with Depleted Uranium. „It is the best movie about Depleted Uranium Weapons I have seen in my 20 years as activist against these terrible weapons. I saw myself in that boy", says Damacio Lopez, director of the International Depleted Uranium Study Team (IDUST). Trailer: www.miguelsilveirafilm.com/narrative-work
Serbia, 2022, Director Zelimir Gvardiol, Production: Pradok, Documentary, 33 minutes, Serbian with Portuguese subtitles
23 years after the bombing of Serbia in 1999, the dropping of depleted uranium bombs and the destruction of chemical plants by NATO pact, the team of this documentary road movie travels in search of survivors after the ecological genocide, while permanently polluted water, air and land continue to poison. www.pradok.org.rs/small-and-big/
After the film Q & A with filmmaker and special guest Damacio A. Lopez from New Mexico.
05/27 Saturday (Award Day)
Sweden/Korea/Scotland, 2022, Director Julian Vogel, Feature Documentary, 80 minutes. English with Portuguese subtitles
It’s May, 2018. Nils is arriving back to his home in the suburbs of Stockholm, Sweden. As he opens the door, a leaflet is caught in the letterbox entitled: “If War or Crisis Comes”. It is a leaflet distributed to every household in Sweden, sent out by the government for the first time since 1962 – when the world was in the midst of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Together with his best friend Julian, Nils embarks on an Inter-Continental Bunker Mission; to learn from the best in order to outlast what calamity is sure to come. Nils and Julian go on a journey around the world to find out what a global nuclear war, and the end of the world might look like, and how they might try to prepare for such a scenario. Finally, after months of traveling to gather opinions and knowledge on the subject, they construct and live in a fallout shelter – in Nils’ parent’s basement in Stockholm. From pretending the world has ended at a Post-Apocalyptic Festival in Poland, to encounters with hardcore survivalists in the United States, to meeting with survivors of the Hiroshima Atomic bomb attack in Japan, Nils and Julian hope their journey inspires others to join the debate on what we can do as a global community to prevent such disasters from happening. ICBM is an accessible and entertaining documentary, with the potential of creating debate and further outreach on the subject of nuclear arms, collaborating with organisations such as The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Hiroshima Interpreters for Peace and others. The film aims to be funny, turned serious, and encourage younger generations to engage with those generations who lived through the cold war on a subject that in today’s darkening political climate is becoming ever more concerning. www.jackallenfilm.com/icbm/ / Trrailer: https://vimeo.com/537390683
USA, 2022, Director Heidi Hutner, Producer Heidi Hutner & Simeon Hutner, Featuring Jane Fonda and others,
Documentary, 77 min. English with Portuguese subtitles
A feature documentary about the 1979 Three Mile Island meltdown--the worst commercial nuclear accident in U.S. history. RADIOACTIVE covers the never-before-told stories of four intrepid homemakers, two lawyers who took the local community's case all the way to the Supreme Court, and a young female journalist who was caught in the radioactive crossfire. The film features activist and actor Jane Fonda - whose film, CHINA SYNDROME (a fictional account of a nuclear meltdown), opened 12 days before the real disaster in Pennsylvania. RADIOACTIVE also breaks the story of a radical new health study (in process) that may finally expose the truth of the meltdown. For over forty years, the nuclear industry has done all in their power to cover up their criminal actions, claiming, as they always do, "No one was harmed and nothing significant happened at Three Mile Island." In this thrilling feminist documentary, indomitable women fight back against the nuclear industry Goliath to expose one of the worst cover-ups in U.S. history. www.radioactivethefilm.com
Special guest Libbe HaLevy introduces the film.
After the film: Awards Ceremony
05/28 Sunday (Fukushima)
United States / Japan, 2021, Director Eiko Otake
Art/Foto-Documentation, 114 minutes. No dialogue, text in Portuguese.
“A Body in Fukushima” is a film created by dance artist Eiko Otake consisting of still photographs, inter-titles, and an original score. Photographs are selected from tens of thousands taken by historian/photographer William Johnston of Otake alone in the irradiated landscapes of post-nuclear meltdown Fukushima, Japan. Throughout their five visits from 2014 to 2019, Otake danced in dialogue with a changed Fukushima. Otake wrote the text and edited the film as well as sound, which includes original music and sound by Kronos Quartet’s David Harrington. www.eikootake.org
After the film Q & A with guests and festival final.
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