The War Game is a fictional, worst-case-scenario docu-drama about nuclear war and its aftermath in and around a typical English city. Although it won an Oscar for Best Documentary, it is fiction. It was intended as an hour-long program to air on BBC 1, but it was deemed too intense and violent to broadcast. It went to theatrical distribution as a feature film instead. Low-budget and shot on location, it strives for and achieves convincing and unflinching realism. Written by
BBC TV's film about a nuclear attack on Britain directed by Peter Watkins
Did You Know?
Despite having been produced by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), the film was banned from television broadcast. The official reason was for violence and depiction of human suffering, but others hinted that it may have been because it went against the official government line concerning survivability of nuclear attack. While the ban forbade television broadcast, it did not forbid cinematic distribution. Because of this loophole, the film was given wide release in theatres, and won four major film awards. See more
Within the next 15 years, possibly another 12 countries will have acquired thermonuclear weapons. For this reason, if not through accident or the impulses of man himself, it is now more than possible that what you have seen happen in this film will have taken place before the year 1980.