The first film made following the nuclear meltdown accident at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, near Pripyat, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union, on the 26 April 1986, focuses on the immediate aftermath of the disaster and the cleanup effort.
A radiation detector crackles ominously as a helicopter circles the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the live-action footage shot by director Vladimir Shevchenko's crew - the first to film the results of the Chernobyl meltdown. In a televised address by Mikhail Gorbachev on 14 May 1986, the Russian leader outlines the scope of the terrible problems created by that April 26th disaster; this video then goes on to document the heroism of doctors and firemen, the evacuation of residents, the decision to produce a "sarcophagus" to cover the still-burning reactor, and the contributions made by many Soviets in the weeks following the meltdown - highlighting the ability of the Russian people to respond to this crisis. A Soviet official calls the community response an act of mass heroism and cites individual workers for their courage. The cowardice of a few - a teacher who deserted his class, an engineer who hid out in the villages - is the subject of a party meeting; offenders are expelled, not...Written by
Ulf Kjell Gür