A non-NATO nuclear missile is fired from Turkey at USSR, where it detonates. Soviet response is automatic as it's seen as a NATO missile. Can continued escalation be avoided? We follow the US president and a bomber crew.
Rebecca De Mornay,
James Earl Jones
A TV reporter and cameraman are taken hostage on a tugboat while covering a workers strike. The demands of the hostage-takers are to collect all the nuclear detonators in the Charleston, SC... See full summary »
This mock documentary uses archival footage, interviews and reports taken out of context and staged interviews to highlight a possible escalation into a nuclear war. In this feature, ... See full summary »
Terri Hansen is discovered in the desert beside the blackened husk of her car which contains the charred corpse of her husband. When forensic evidence makes her out to be her husband's ... See full summary »
With the rapid emergence of digital devices, an unstoppable, invisible force is changing human lives in ways from the microscopic to the gargantuan: Big Data, a word that was barely used a ... See full summary »
A middle-aged woman frees herself from the spirit-crushing influence of her husband by refusing to remember what her age is. Her husband works long hours as an advertising executive and ... See full summary »
Five juvenile lost causes are sent to the Everglades where a war veteran tries to reform them using survival tactics. Their new skills and resolve are tested when a Miami drug lord targets them for trying to clean up their neighborhood.
Paul Michael Glaser
During the live broadcast, a tape of the last dress rehearsal was available for broadcast, just in case some technical problem interrupted the live performance, so that there would be no interruption of the broadcast. See more »
When Buck begins translating, he begins speaking *immediately* upon hearing the Soviet premier speak, betraying the fact that he's just reciting lines in a script. A real translator would need to listen to most of the first sentence before speaking, especially with languages that place the verb at or near the end of the sentence, as most languages other than English do. See more »
Col. Jack Grady, Command Pilot Group 6:
There's only one decision left to make, and then our job is done. We decide from what height to drop the bombs. We've already taken on enough radiation from the blast, at best we'd last a couple of days.
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What I liked best about the live version of Fail Safe was that the restrictions of live TV forced the filmmakers to concentrate on those two old-fashioned values: acting and writing. Without the opportunity to edit or use fancy visuals, director Stephen Frears was forced to keep his camerawork and pacing crisp, simple, and efficient. As a result, the actors were really allowed an opportunity to shine. Every line of dialogue had to be well-delivered, and every gesture and facial expression had to be meaningful. The absence of music, black and white photography, and slow pacing allowed time to steadily absorb what was going on and churn it about in my mind; and I loved every minute of it.
Admittedly, the story of Fail Safe seems a bit dated in the post Cold War period, and the originally film itself paled in comparison to the similar Dr. Strangelove. But as an experiment in the art of storytelling, it was a triumph. The best qualities of watching a live play married with the television's ability to reach mass audiences.
I'm hoping that this does signal a resurgence in live TV, because it opens up real possibilities for what the medium could be used for. For one, it forces both directors and actors to all be just a little smarter and more alert - no opportunity to fix mistakes. It makes them more self-consciously aware that the folks at home better be entertained or at least interested in what goes on onscreen.
I'm hoping that next CBS or some other network experiments with some original live fare. After all, back in the 50's, live TV produced some great scripts, some of which were re-made into movies (Marty, Requiem for a Heavyweight) and made the careers of people like writer/producer Rod Serling and actors like Paul Newman.
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