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The War Game (1965)

A docudrama depicting a hypothetical nuclear attack on Britain.

Director:

Peter Watkins

Writer:

Peter Watkins
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Michael Aspel Michael Aspel ... Commentator
Peter Graham Peter Graham ... Commentator
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Storyline

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 io <orb@europa.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BBC TV's film about a nuclear attack on Britain directed by Peter Watkins

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 February 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Krigsspel See more »

Filming Locations:

Canterbury, Kent, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The extras for the film were from the towns of Gravesend, Dartford and surrounding areas. Many were members of local Amateur Dramatic companies and can be seen in scenes that are wildly different. See more »

Goofs

The so-called Honest John 'missile' shown during the first half of the film is nothing of the sort. It is, in fact, nothing more than a NATO-type external aviation drop tank, and bears absolutely no resemblance whatsoever to an Honest John. See more »

Quotes

Soldier: They're not letting any photographers in there.
Interviewer: Yes yes I know, but just a minute, will you tell us what they're doing in there, please?
Soldier: They're simply burning the bodies. The buildings are full of them, there's just too many to bury. The buildings are full so all we can do is put them under eight steel girders and put a fire underneath, just like making a grill.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Some prints replace the stills of Lyndon B. Johnson and Alexey Kosygin with stills of the White House and the Red Square See more »

Connections

Referenced in The 50 Greatest Documentaries (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Graphically real newsreel feel makes this movie work.
14 October 2003 | by Captain_CouthSee all my reviews

The War Game (1965) was a TV movie funded by the BBC. Peter Watkins gave them a movie that probably caused the hair on the necks of the BBC's standards and practices department to stand on end. Mr. Watkins paints a grim and bleak outlook for humanity if there ever was a nuclear conflict. Based on data from the hellish bombings of Dresden, Berlin, Tokyo, the atomic bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki and nuclear testing information from the U.S .Government (among his painstaking research and sources) shows the utter devastation that even a small exchange of missiles would bring upon his homeland. The acting is top notch (using a cast of unknowns) and the F/X were quite up to par (making the best out of the small budget). Even though the subject matter is dark and bitter, The War Game is a compelling watch and I highly recommended it for everyone.


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