Hiroshima : Master’s Project, Spring 2010. Kazuo Matsumuro was 32 when she witnessed the Hiroshima bombing 1300 meters from the epicenter. She said that people's skin was falling off and they kept their arms in front of them like zombies to prevent the skin from sticking.
Kazuo Matsumuro was 32 when she witnessed the Hiroshima bombing 1300 meters from the epicenter. She said that people's skin was falling off and they kept their arms in front of them like zombies to prevent the skin from sticking.
“There were the shadowy forms of people, some of whom looked like walking ghosts. Others moved as though in pain, the scarecrows, their arms held out from their bodies with forearms and hands dangling. These people puzzled me until I suddenly realized that they had been burned and were holding their arms out to prevent the painful friction of raw surfaces rubbing together.”
Bomb Affected People
Gives a Face to the Tragedy
of the A-Bombings.
Produced by the Hiroshima
Peace Culture Foundation.
Kang, Age 26
Numata, Age 22
As an educator writing an historical feature film, I was and I am aware that a movie has the power to shape how students and citizens think about the past.
As Robert Rosenstone has observed:
“It must be clear to even the most academic of historians that the visual media have become (perhaps) the chief conveyor of public history, that for every person who reads a book on an historical topic which a film has been made … many millions of people are likely to encounter that same past on the screen.”
Without sufficient background knowledge and critical viewing skills, “a possible (or probable) outcome is for the filmic account to ‘colonize’ their [students’] thinking about the past – taking up residence in the mind as a kind of literal truth” (VanSledright, 2002).
A Japanese-American spy smuggled into Hiroshima, Japan in 1945 falls in love with a young, wealthy Japanese woman jeopardizing his mission and his life. Their love leads to a chain reaction of events and the decision to drop the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Ends with the lanterns honoring
those who died
August 6, 1945
Hundreds of red, orange and yellow paper lanterns, lit by single candles, float and bob in a well kept pond.
Japanese elders in their eighties and nineties, some with burn scares on their wrinkled faces and some with severe limps, hobble with their families beside the pond.
Children playfully launch paper lanterns.
The sound of a running stream drowns out the gleeful cries of children.
SETSU struggles to write on a piece of rice paper. Her hands have a strong dose of arthritis.
Her twenty-one year old grandson, YOUNG SADAO, walks by her side. His outfit typifies current Japanese pop culture. He holds a red paper lantern.
Setsu hands paper and pen to young Sadao. He positions the lantern on the ponds bank.
Please write Sadao Finn.
Sadao writes Sadao Finn on the rice paper. Setsu sprinkles a few white chrysanthemum petals inside the lantern.
Young Sadao squats down, lights the candle with a butane lighter and with honor and respect launches the lantern into the pond. The current carries it away.
Setsu’s family follows the lantern. Setsu and young Sadao hang back.
Out of respect for your grandfather I never told the true story. Now that he has passed away and the times are more forgiving, I can share it. (pause) It was dawn at our mountain home ...