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In 1984, after rising tensions between the Americans and Soviets nuclear war breaks out. Threads is a documentary-style film about the events leading up to the warheads, the chaos during, the nuclear winter and rebuilding efforts afterwards in Britain.
The plot initially revolves around a couple in Sheffield, Ruth and Jimmy, who have decided to marry after accidentally falling pregnant. It then expands to include the emergency operations staff, which has been sent down into a bunker.
The real story is about what would actually happen prior to and after a nuclear attack, should you survive. The writer (Barry Hines) clearly did his research–every step taken by the government before and after seems terrifyingly likely. The list of people consulted includes Carl Sagan, as well as loads of other very smart people so I’ve no doubt it’s as accurate as possible. Which makes this all the more terrifying.
If you’re looking for a horror film that has a very real basis in reality, then here you are. You may want to have something by Pixar in the sidelines for afters, though.
You can watch the entire film here for free and I highly recommend it. It’s grim as hell, but thought-provoking. I’m glad I watched it, but will not be watching it again.
From the Wikipedia page:
[The director Mick] Jackson later recalled that unlike most BBC productions, which once finished airing would immediately result in phone calls of congratulations from friends or colleagues, no such calls came after the first screening of Threads . Jackson later “realised… that people had just sat there thinking about it, in many cases not sleeping or being able to talk.”