'Fukushima 50' [Blu-ray]
(Ken Watanabe, Takumi Saitoh, Tomorô Taguchi, et al / Blu-ray / NR / 2021 / MPI Home Entertainment)
Overview: Japan’s Tōhoku Region: at a magnitude of 9.0, the strongest earthquake in the country’s history strikes, triggering a huge tsunami and carnage that would end up killing thousands of people and displacing many more.
It mercilessly engulfs the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima prefecture, causing a crippling station blackout. Unable to be cooled, the nuclear reactors quickly turn into hydrogen bombs at the brink of explosion.
If the power plant is abandoned, Japan’s destruction is assured.
Blu-ray Verdict: Facing a life or death situation, the power plant workers known as the Fukushima 50, including shift supervisor Izaki and plant manager Yoshida, remain on the site until the bitter end.
As the world holds its breath, the Fukushima 50 fight for their hometown, their families, and the future of Japan.
Given that this film is based on the real life stories recounted by the people themselves, for my money, 'Fukushima 50' (a pseudonym given by English-language media to a group of employees at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant) should be labeled as an out and out Superhero movie!
I admittedly didn't know much about this event from 2011 beforehand, but watching along, well, wow, what an incredible depiction of a film this truly is for all concerned.
Following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on March 11th, 2011, a related series of nuclear accidents resulted in melting of the cores of three reactors. These 50 employees we get to see, understand and root for here in this film remained on-site after 750 other workers were evacuated.
Chock full, even though we all know the outcome, with acres of suspense and a boat load of frenetic urgency, it wouldn't surprise me to learn that some viewers watching along were in tear well before the midway section!
It is a very emotional film, because you simply cannot be moved by the Fukushima 50 and how they just didn't give up. They didn't give up on each other and neither did they give up on saving the plant.
Even when it felt impossible, even when they knew they might die, they didn't give up. Amazing and a genuinely heartfelt movie, especially for our current times, even given the dire subject matter at hand here. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.