IMDb > The Atomic Cafe (1982)
The Atomic Cafe
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The Atomic Cafe (1982) More at IMDbPro »

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The Atomic Cafe -- Co-directed by Kevin Raferty ("Roger and Me"), ATOMIC CAFE is a chilling and often hilarious reminder of Cold War-era paranoia in the United States.


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7.7/10   3,176 votes »
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Release Date:
29 October 1982 (Finland) See more »
Disturbing collection of 1940s and 1950s United States government issued propaganda films designed to reassure Americans that the atomic bomb was not a threat to their safety. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Horrifying and hilarious. See more (47 total) »


  (in credits order)
Paul Tibbets ... Himself (archive footage)
Harry S. Truman ... Himself (archive footage) (as President Harry S Truman)
W.H.P. Blandy ... Himself - Commander of the Bikini Test (archive footage) (as Vice Admiral W.H.P. Blandy)
Brien McMahon ... Himself (archive footage) (as Sen. Brian McMahon)
Lloyd Bentsen ... Himself (archive footage) (as Rep. Lloyd Bentsen)
Owen Brewster ... Himself (archive footage) (as Sen. Owen Brewster)
Julius Rosenberg ... Himself (archive footage)
Ethel Rosenberg ... Herself (archive footage)
Val Peterson ... Himself - Director of Civil Defense (archive footage) (as Gov. Val Peterson)

Lyndon Johnson ... Himself (archive footage) (as Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson)
Lewis Strauss ... Himself - Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission (archive footage) (as Lewis L. Strauss)
George Molan ... Himself (archive footage) (as Cpl. George Molan)
George Portell ... Himself (archive footage) (as Tech Sgt. George Portell)
Jerry Schneider ... Himself (archive footage)
Sergeant Weaver ... Himself (archive footage)
Seymour Melman ... Himself - Columbia University (archive footage) (as Prof. Seymour Melman)
Mario Salvadori ... Himself - Columbia University (archive footage) (as Prof. Mario Salvadori)
Nikita Khrushchev ... Himself (archive footage)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Hugh Beaumont ... Military Officer (archive footage) (uncredited)

Albert Einstein ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Dwight D. Eisenhower ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
J. Edgar Hoover ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Douglas MacArthur ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Joseph McCarthy ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Richard Nixon ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
William H. Peterson ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Ronald Reagan ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
George A. Smathers ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Joseph Stalin ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
James E. Van Zandt ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Directed by
Jayne Loader 
Kevin Rafferty 
Pierce Rafferty 
Produced by
Jayne Loader .... producer
Kevin Rafferty .... producer
Pierce Rafferty .... producer
Film Editing by
Jayne Loader 
Kevin Rafferty 
Sound Department
Margaret Crimmins .... sound editor (as Margie Crimmins)
Lee Dichter .... sound mix: Photo Magnetic Studios
Andrea Hull .... sound assistant
Editorial Department
Cyndi Bono .... negative cutter
Dominick Bono .... negative cutter
MaryAnn DiLillo .... negative cutter (as Mary-Ann Dillillo)
Music Department
John Allinson .... music source
Ray Avery .... music source
Richard Bass .... music consultant
David Dunaway .... music consultant
Rick Eaker .... music coordinator
Helen Hunter .... music source
Robert Javors .... music source
William L. Schurk .... music source
Raymond Wile .... music source
Charles Wolfe .... music consultant (as Dr. Charles Wolfe)
Other crew
Nan Allendorfer .... additional archival researcher: Washington
Obie Benz .... production consultant
Carol Clement .... titles
Stewart M. Crone .... memorial activities
Jon Else .... additional archival researcher: Los Alamos
Margaret Henry .... additional archival researcher: London
Susan Kellam .... production consultant
Victoria Peterson .... additional archival researcher: Los Angeles
George Pillsbury .... production consultant
Pierce Rafferty .... archival researcher
David Thaxton .... additional archival researcher: Washington
Chris Beaver .... special thanks
Lance Bird .... special thanks
Joseph P. Bono .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Lillian Brandon .... special thanks
Tom Brandon .... special thanks
Alida R. Dayton .... special thanks
Richard D. Ero .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Charles Grigg .... special thanks
Joseph K. Hooper .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Richard N. Houk .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Judy Irving .... special thanks
Tom Johnson .... special thanks
Arthur Kanegis .... special thanks
Richard Klein .... special thanks
Mireille C. Kreeger .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Mary Lampson .... special thanks
Terry Lawler .... special thanks
J. Fred MacDonald .... special thanks
Dorothy J. MacDorman .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Miguel Ángel Muñoz .... special thanks: Bono Film Services (as Miguel A. Muñoz)
Ginny Newsom .... special thanks
Carl P. Palumbo .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Rick Prelinger .... special thanks (as Richard Prelinger)
Mrs. W.G. Rafferty .... special thanks
Allen L. Russell .... special thanks: Bono Film Services
Deborah Shaffer .... special thanks
Zenon J. Slawinski .... special thanks: Bono Film Services

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
86 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

The film was part of a 1980s cycle of films about atomic bombs and nuclear warfare which had started in 1979 with The China Syndrome (1979). The films included Silkwood (1983), Testament (1983), Threads (1984) (TV), WarGames (1983), The Day After (1983) (TV), The Atomic Cafe (1982), The Manhattan Project (1986), "Whoops Apocalypse" (1982), Special Bulletin (1983) (TV), Ground Zero (1987), Barefoot Gen (Barefoot Gen (1983)), "Rules of Engagement" (1989), When the Wind Blows (1986), Letters from a Dead Man (Dead Man's Letters (1986)), Memoirs of a Survivor (1981) and The Chain Reaction (1980).See more »
Army information film:When not close enough to be killed, the atomic bomb is one of the most beautiful sights in the world.See more »
Movie Connections:
When the Atom Bomb FellSee more »


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17 out of 20 people found the following review useful.
Horrifying and hilarious., 5 January 2003
Author: Robert L. Folkner from West Lafayette, Indiana

A great look into the ultra-paranoid mindset of the Cold War which I lived through. It is truly amazing how such madness (paranoia and intolerance of someone who dares to exercise REAL freedom of speech, of which examples are clearly shown) was accepted in those times.

The "Bert the Turtle" sequence cracked me up. I REMEMBER doing this "Duck and Cover" idiocy! When I was in grade school, we had Civil Defense drills: we were taught to leave the classroom, go out in the hall, face the wall, lean against it and cover our faces with our folded arms. Never you mind that the wall that was behind us consisted mostly of window glass! A shockwave hitting it would have blasted the shards into our backs. It would have looked like the St. Valentine's Day Massacre!

A great film.

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Recent Posts (updated daily)User
what were the actual ideas expressed about the times covered? swashbuck1
Disturbing, at times... Boring, thoroughly highwayChile
great old footage ksf-2
Song (about Eisenhower?) iskander777888
No one's here yet? arigatou_gozaimasu
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