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Directed by Jayne Loader, Kevin Rafferty, Pierce Rafferty

United States 1982 86 mins. In English

Composed entirely of found footage, The Atomic Cafe offers a darkly humorous leap into the abyss of cold war–era hubris, stitching together PSAs, educational films, newsreels, and other propaganda-based ephemera related to the nuclear scare of the 1950s. Cafe lets the source material do the talking, as students “duck and cover,” politicians bluster on about nuclear superiority, and military training films claim that “viewed from a safe distance, the atomic bomb is one of the most beautiful sights ever seen by man.” “A comic horror film. Everyone should visit The Atomic Cafe.”—J. Hoberman, Village Voice