• Short Summary

    Documentary warning of the "menacing shadow" of the atomic bomb.

  • Description

    Rolling title reads: "The Daily Express presents these Pathe newsreels as a reminder that a menacing shadow lies across the vista of a world enriched by man's fabulous discovery."

    01:36:29 Pathe News item: "Experiment with Death". Metronome. Map showing the location of Bikini Atoll / Island. Battleship Pennsylvania. Raymond Blackburn MP. American Bomber takes off. Pilots are shown. Crew of ship sit on the deck and put their heads down so that they do not see the blast. Other men put goggles over their eyes. C/Us of men putting them on. Crew of the bomber. Air to air shots of the plane opening flaps for bomb to drop through. Graphic animation of the explosion. Film of the atomic bomb explosion lighting up men on board the ship then shot of the explosion. Explosion seen from another angle. Mushroom cloud from the air. More shots of explosion and mushroom clouds.

    Voiceover speaks of the benefits of atomic energy in contrast to its powers of destruction. Navy men go in to check damage to the atom fleet including the German cruiser Prinz Eugen. Shots of damaged Japanese cruiser. Men on board ship look through binoculars at the wreckage of ships. Shot of a rocket taking off - this may be way of launching atomic bombs in the future. Professor Joad speaks of the possibility of an atomic bomb dropping on London. He speaks angrily against the scientist. Scientist Sir John Anderson speaks of the possibility of using the atomic bomb to preserve peace rather than of waging war. Shots of the interior of an atomic power station or laboratory working on atomic bombs - ? Voice over calls for atomic plants to be put into the hands of the United Nations.

    01:43:10 Second news item: "The Fifth Warning". Explosion as bomb is released underwater. Graphic animation of the explosion. Captured Japanese film of a hospital caring for victims of Hiroshima bomb. A woman's back is shown to the camera - the pattern of her dress was burned into her skin by the heat of the bomb. A child's watch is taken off to show burning of the skin. A road has the shape of dead man burned into the concrete. The wounded are treated in a hospital. Nurses apply bandages. Badly burned backs, limbs and faces are shown to the camera. A man whose ears have been burned off shows his horrific injuries.

    01:45:45 Gauge showing seconds counting down. Man speaks into a microphone - he counts down to "fire" into the microphone. Explosion is seen. Wave of boiling steam engulfs ships of the test fleet. Newsreel cameras in pilotless aircraft record the explosion. Oil rings on the water are all that remains of many ships. Dwindled strength of tidal wave was picked up by cameras on local islands. Another shot of mushroom cloud after atomic bomb explosion.

    01:48:03 End rolling title talks of the scientific formula of the atomic age: "It is an equation that can be written in blood or in gleaming symbols to light up the path to boundless progress in the peaceful pursuits of mankind." Then in large letters: "Ours is the Choice".

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Black & White
    Time in/Out:
    01:35:54:00 / 01:48:36:00

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