Monday, 4 November 2013

Film Review - Threads

Threads was a BBC production back in the mid-eighties, back then the fear of a nuclear war was a real possibility and this film showed the likely effects of a nuclear strike on Sheffield, an industrial city in the north of England. As can be expected from the subject matter it is a grim film, made more poignant by the hopeful beginning against a backdrop of impending war between the two superpowers of the time.

The story follows a young couple, planning their marriage and preparing for their first child when the war starts and a nuclear bomb is dropped on the city. It's told in a documentary style that informs the viewer at each stage of the terrible events that occur. It also provides the wider context in which the more personal struggle is set against.

It's a bleak film that just keeps getting worse and remains a difficult film to watch. In some ways it has aged, the lack of special effects being the most notable, but the film does make effective use with what it has. These days the attack sequence would be a CG masterpiece. Here it is some clever lighting tricks and some very localised scenes, but in a way it has more impact  because of it.

This remains an excellent film, but be warned it is one of the bleakest films you're likely to see.


Documentary-style account of a nuclear attack on Sheffield during the 1980s. Ruth Beckett (Karen Meagher) and Jimmy Kemp (Reece Dinsdale) live in Sheffield and are busy preparing for their upcoming marriage. When Russia invades Iran, hoping to bring the country under its influence, tension is increased throughout the West, and particularly at the local R.A.F. base. Blissfully unconcerned with world events, Ruth and Jimmy carry on with their wedding preparations. However, when two Russian ICBM's hit Sheffield, turning the landscape into a radioactive desert, Ruth and Jimmy are forced to face up to the harsh reality of life in the aftermath of a nuclear explosion.


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