American Experience: Season 1, Episode 2

Radio Bikini (10 Jun. 1988)

TV Episode  |  Not Rated  |   |  Documentary, History
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 502 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 11 critic

It starts with a live radio broadcast from the Bikini Atoll a few days before it is annihilated by a nuclear test. Shows great footage from these times and tells the story of the US Navy ... See full summary »


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Title: Radio Bikini (10 Jun 1988)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Episode credited cast:
Kilon Bauno ...
Himself - Chief of the Bikinians
John Smitherman ...
Himself - Veteran of nuclear weapons tests at Bikini Atoll in 1946
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Warren Austin ...
Himself - US Delegate to UN (archive footage)
Bernard Baruch ...
Himself (archive footage)
W.H.P. Blandy ...
Himself (archive footage) (as Vice Admiral William H.P. Blandy)
Paul DeAngelo ...
Himself - Concerned About Bikini Test (archive footage)
James Forrestal ...
Himself (archive footage)
Vyacheslav Molotov ...
Himself (archive footage)
Woodrow P. Swancutt ...
Himself (archive footage) (as Woodrow Swancutt)
Harry S. Truman ...
Himself (archive footage)
Harold Urey ...
Himself - Concerned About Bikini Test (archive footage)
Lee Van Atta ...
Himself - Radio Reporter (voice) (archive sound)


It starts with a live radio broadcast from the Bikini Atoll a few days before it is annihilated by a nuclear test. Shows great footage from these times and tells the story of the US Navy Sailors who were exposed to radioactive fallout. One interviewed sailor suffered grotesquely swollen limbs and he is shown being interviewed with enormous left arm and hand. Written by <anon@anon.anon>

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Not Rated




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Release Date:

10 June 1988 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


References Gilda (1946) See more »


Kuu Ipo
by Andy Iona and his Islanders
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User Reviews

U.S. as a failed colonizer of the Pacific
5 April 2012 | by (Honolulu, Hawai'i) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie as a teen when it first came out, just two years after my first trip to Micronesia. There, I had got my first glimpses into the failures of U.S. colonialism in the Pacific. Upon my return stateside from Micronesia I couldn't help wonder why more Americans were not aware of our colonial possessions in the Pacific. This great documentary provides, at least, some partial answers. It is said that the mark of a civilized man is the ability to look at a column of numbers and weep. With 500 cases of cancer among Marshallese Islanders related to U.S. atomic testing in their home still yet expected to manifest, it was truly the basest and most uncivilized actions the U.S. took to test our atomic arsenal on our own military soldiers and the people of the Marshall Islands. Perhaps you, too, with seethe with the anger and outrage at the U.S. government that I did when first viewing this documentary. Or perhaps you are as calloused as the American government itself. Either way this is a fascinating look at an example of the worst a colonial power can perpetrate and a rational for why American colonial possessions in Micronesia were kept so secret from the American people.

3 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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