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10 Streaming Ways To Celebrate Our Atomic Anniversary

10 Streaming Ways To Celebrate Our Atomic Anniversary:

July 16 marks the 70th anniversary of the Trinity test, the first detonation of a nuclear weapon in human history. It was the United States that was responsible of course — U!S!A! U!S!A! — thanks to the efforts of the Manhattan Project and humanity’s seeming desire to march slowly towards self-destruction. To mark the momentous, terrifying occasion, here are 10 steaming choices from Netflix and Hulu to remind you that, really…this whole atomic bomb thing was a bad idea.


WARGAMES (1983)
Spoilers: Even in this age of the Internet, reading the words “Would you like to play a game?” on your computer screen should be considered a warning in and of itself. Tapping into the free-floating fear of accidental nuclear annihilation, this classic suggested that it was so likely that even a child could do it. What can I say? The 1980s were a scary time for so many reasons. (Available on Netflix)


RADIO BIKINI (1988)
You might think that being the site of atomic tests would, just maybe, be a problem for the vegetation and inhabitants in nearby areas. This Academy Award-nominated documentary reveals that… yeah, that’s actually entirely right, and the after effects weren’t exactly great. Exploding nuclear weapons! Apparently not a great idea after all. (Available on Netflix)


THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER (1990)
By the late 20th Century, the nuclear bomb had become more of an idea than a reality, with no-one thinking that any country would be crazy enough to actually use one — which made this thriller about a nuclear submarine crew going AWOL all the more disturbing, despite Sean Connery’s Russian accent or lack thereof. (Available on Netflix)


TRINITY & BEYOND: THE ATOMIC BOMB MOVIE (1995)
The history of the development of nuclear weapons is explored in this documentary, which includes both footage of the Trinity tests that had gone unseen to that point, and also narration from William Shatner, because who better to offer the gravitas that the subject deserves than Denny Crane? (Available on Hulu)


THE PEACEMAKER (1997)
While George Clooney doesn’t necessarily make the best action hero, there’s a certain charm to this movie that sees him crossing the globe to try and track down missing nuclear warheads that had disappeared after the fall of the Soviet Union. Does the movie make sense? Not entirely, but who cares when there’s so much running to be done? (Available on Netflix)


DOOMSDAYER (2000)
If you’re wondering what could make atomic armageddon seem like a good idea, this movie - which features no less that Brigitte Nielsen and Udo Kier, which can only be considered a sign of quality — makes a strong case. But if you’re jonesing for some over the top B-movie thrills, you could do a lot worse that discover the new deadliest weapon on the planet and why it’s already too late to stop it. (Spoilers.) (Available on Netflix)


COUNTDOWN TO ZERO (2009)
Just who has the bomb now, and how close to potential apocalypse are we? This documentary looks not only at the history of the nuclear bomb, but also the main players who currently have the buttons to put their fingers on. Prepare to get just that little bit more nervous after watching. (Available on Netflix)


AFTER THE DARK (2013) A thought experiment about who should live and die in the event of nuclear war turns into something far more intense and real in this psychological thriller starring Agent Carter’s James D'Arcy as a master manipulator who ends up losing control of the situation on an impressive scale. (Available on Netflix)


THE FORGOTTEN BOMB (2015)
In a post-Cold War world, is there still the threat (promise, perhaps) of Mutually Assured Destruction that can keep us from the brink? Filmmaker Bud Ryan thinks so, and argues his case in this exploration of the power of the bomb, not only in its literally explosive sense, but also its ideological one. (Available on Hulu)


MANHATTAN (2014)
This, meanwhile, is the motherlode — which is, perhaps, an awkward turn of phrase considering the subject matter. If you’ve ever thought, “I wish someone would make Mad Men but about the Manhattan Project,” then this is everything you could wish for and then some. Compelling, chilling and at times surprisingly, darkly funny, this little-known series is definitely the one thing you have to watch to mark the anniversary. These are the people that changed the world. (Available on Hulu)


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