Denkmal-Film Verhaag


Nuclear Split

a film by Bertram Verhaag

91 min

Please note: this film is only available in German


1985: The “Nuclear Split” to which this film’s title refers is a feature of life in the Upper Palatinate, a region of West Germany bordering Czechoslovakia. In the rural communities surrounding the proposed nuclear reprocessing plant, these divisive processes are occurring in the local population. A child paints a picture: demonstrators on one side and police on the other. Molotov cocktails and tear gas shells, helicopters shooting over barbed wire fences. It might seem an unusual subject for a child’s painting, but since the location of the nuclear reprocessing plant was finally decided on February 4th 1985, many people in the Upper Palatinate have seen their lives change radically.

This film provides a profound insight into the process of ecological destruction, revealing the intentions behind the construction of a nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in terms of atomic policies and highlights the dangers to which the population will be exposed as a result of radioactive emissions.

The film focuses on the inhabitants of this region, the threats to which they are exposed and the personal and collective processes of transformation they have undergone. Once loyal citizens have been reluctantly turned into radicals. Civil servants, housewives and mothers reveal strong feelings of political and social responsibility that extend far beyond any initial expression of indignation. Local figures are not afraid to speak out frankly, nor to demonstrate solidarity when those labelled “anarchists” are subjected to CS gas attacks along the perimeter fence of the building site. People vent their anger both within their own four walls and standing face to face with armed policemen in the midst of a conflict that has all the attributes of a civil war.

In their struggle against the nuclear threat, the people of the Upper Palatinate find themselves caught in a field of tension somewhere between powerlessness and anger, despair and defiance - but they’re not the only ones.

Dokumentarfilmpreis der Stadt München 1987 -- Film des Monats, Jury der Evangelischen Filmarbeit 1987 -- Preis der Gesellschaft für Kommunikationskultur 1987 -- Beste journalistische Leistung, Ökomedia 1987 -- Förderpreis der Stadt Freiburg 1987 -- Förderpreis Internationaler Jugendfilmtest 1987 -- Preis der deutschen Filmkritik, Duisburger Filmwoche 1987 -- Silberne Taube, 30. Internationale Leipziger Dokumentar- und Kurzfilmwoche 1987 -- Summa cum laude, Goldmedaille, Medicinale International Parma, 1987 -- Deutscher Jugend-Video-Preis 1987 -- Bester Dokumentarfilm 1987, Leserjury epd-Film
Buch & Regie B. Verhaag und C. Strigel Kamera Claus Strigel - Waldemar Hauschild
- Thomas Schwan Schnitt Draha Cizek Ton Peter Bergmann
- Lothar Kreutzer Musik Rio Reiser, Konstantin Wecker & Neumann
In Kooperation mit Pro-ject Filmproduktion, kulturelle Filmförderung Stadt Hamburg, Filmbüro NRW
© 1986 DENKmal-Film Verhaag GmbH