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Special Bulletin (1983)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama  |  20 March 1983 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 692 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 4 critic

A TV reporter and cameraman are taken hostage on a tugboat while covering a workers strike. The demands of the hostage-takers are to collect all the nuclear detonators in the Charleston, SC... See full summary »

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Title: Special Bulletin (TV Movie 1983)

Special Bulletin (TV Movie 1983) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Won 4 Primetime Emmys. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ed Flanders ...
John Woodley
...
Susan Myles
...
...
Steven Levitt
...
Dr. Bruce Lyman
...
Dr. David McKeeson
Rosalind Cash ...
Frieda Barton
...
Jim Seaver
...
Diane Silverman
Robert Kay ...
George Takashima
J. Wesley Huston ...
Bernard Frost
Frank Dent ...
Dr. Jason Halpern
Charles Lanyer ...
Merritt Cunningham
Mie Hunt ...
Ellen Stevens
Bruce Fields ...
Walter S. Letteau
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Storyline

A TV reporter and cameraman are taken hostage on a tugboat while covering a workers strike. The demands of the hostage-takers are to collect all the nuclear detonators in the Charleston, SC area so they may be detonated at sea. They threaten to detonate a nuclear device of their own of their demand isnt met. Written by Keith Chang <changk@ucs.orst.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

20 March 1983 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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), WarGames (1983), The Day After (1983), The Atomic Cafe (1982), The Manhattan Project (1986), Whoops Apocalypse (1982), Special Bulletin (1983), Ground Zero (1987), Barefoot Gen (Barefoot Gen (1983)), Rules of Engagement (1989), When the Wind Blows (1986), Letters from a Dead Man (Pisma myortvogo cheloveka (1986)), Memoirs of a Survivor (1981) and The Chain Reaction (1980). See more »

Quotes

Dr. Bruce Lyman: We're a group, we're a group that believes in survival, and I am a former strategic weapons planner for the Pentagon, so I know whereof I speak. There has been a serious change in the strategic thinking of our leaders; they now believe that they can wage nuclear war, they believe that they will wage nuclear war and they believe they can win it. Now if that frightens you, that's good, we're here in Charleston today because Charleston is a major staging area for nuclear offense. You have Poseidon...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opens with a commercial advertising shows for the fictional RBS network, followed by the title "Special Bulletin" as the commercial is interrupted. There are no opening credits, making this one of the first TV movies ever produced without some sort of opening credits. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent film, worth seeing.
16 September 2006 | by (Fairfax, VA) – See all my reviews

A fascinating and gripping film, I had the pleasure of watching it in 1983 during its premiere on NBC. The concept of showing the film as a series of televised news broadcasts and bulletins was inventive and hearkened back to the days of the War of the Worlds broadcast, giving it something of an edge. Along with the Day After, these two television movies were among the best made in the early 1980s highlighting the dangers of atomic weapons and nuclear war. The comment I hear every so often of this being a bit cheesy is unfair. Given the context of the time, when tensions were still high in the Cold War, it gave perspective of what might happen. The only problem I had, was that the film should have been longer than its originally airing of two hours, spending as much time on what would happen after an atomic explosion as leading up to the event. The best film of this kind since Special Bulletin and Day After, was the recent Dirty War. I can only imagine how this film would be done today, given the expansion of cable news, via 1983 when the networks were the only real source of news.


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