As tensions between India and Pakistan keep getting worse, millions of Indians clamour for a nuclear attack. But a nuclear war will leave both sides completely destroyed. These films will show you how.

(L to R) Stills from The War Game, The Day After and Threads

Following the Uri attacks of September 18 in Kashmir, Indo-Pak relations have reached an all-time low. Indians are baying for Pakistani blood, with several groups, including the political party Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), demanding that Pakistani actors and artists working in India should go back to their country within forty-eight hours. Certain sections in both countries are clamouring for nuclear war, as if nuclear war is a hand-to-hand scuffle with the umpire who declares you out in gully cricket.

Perhaps…NO, not perhaps…MOST definitely, people who are wanting for a nuclear showdown between India and Pakistan, have NO idea of what a nuclear war means or the kind of catastrophic, irreversible damage it can cause.

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One only needs to google pictures of Hiroshima and Nagasaki victims to know the damage an atomic bomb can cause. USA‘s bombing of Japan’s Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and 9 respectively in 1945 did end World War II, sure, but what about the generations of Japanese families in the two cities, forever suffering from the after-effects of nuclear fallout?

In fact, one can google the pictures of Chernobyl disaster victims as well. An explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26, 1986, in what was then USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) caused the death of 31 people. But entire generations in that place have been suffering from cancer and radiation-related deformities ever since.

Cancer is not funny. Neither is nuclear war. The following films exemplify the short-term and the long-term damage nuclear war can cause:

The Day After (1983)
Director: Edward Hume

Considered one of the greatest television-films of history, The Day After was watched by more than 100 million people on the day it was broadcast (November 20, 1983 on ABC Television network)


The film revolves a fictional nuclear war between the United States and the Soviet Union, following worsening of relations between NATO and Warsaw Pact, and the effect it has on simple American families living on farms near nuclear missle launch facilities.

Threads (1984)
Director: Barry Hines

This BAFTA award-winning television film shows the full-scale horror of a ‘nuclear winter’. Nuclear winter is what would happen in the aftermath of a nuclear war; pollution that would require decades to clear, rapid temperature drop leading to adverse climate change, global agricultural disasters, etc.


The War Game (1965)
Director: Peter Watkins

The War Game is a terrifying and tragic portrayal of a country ravaged by nuclear war. Filmed in black-and-white, the film was made in the style of a news program. It shows Britain, ravaged by USSR’s nuclear attack.


Entire cities are shown to be evacuated. The explosion causes instant flash blindness, followed by a firestorm that burns through everything around it. This is followed by radiation sickness, brain damage, and mass-suicide as people are not able to cope up with the atmosphere contaminated by nuclear fallout.

When The Wind Blows (1986)
Director: Jimmy Murakami

When The Wind Blows is a British, animated film that has only two characters, an elderly couple, living in an isolated rural area of Britain. Britain soon gets involved in a nuclear war with Soviet Union. But the action in the film does not focus on the full-scale war but its effects on this simple, unassuming old couple. First, they are confused by it. Then, they try in their own ways to protect themselves. In the end, they die.


When The Wind Blows is a sad, tragic film that will drive one to tears and not speak of nuclear war casually ever again.

The Road (2009)
Director: John Hillcoat

The Road, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, is about a father and son trying to survive on a day-to-day basis in post-apocalyptic America which has turned into a cold, barren wasteland following a global catastrophe. Law and order and basic human decency has gone for a toss as people are driven to become heartless cannibals for lack of food. However, the moving relationship between the son and father, and the ending in particular, offers some ray of hope for the audience.


Nuclear war is not funny. It is no joke. If India has nuclear weapons, so does Pakistan. War is not the answer.