CODES & MODES Documentary Conference

October 25, 2014

I am happy to announce that I am organizing a conference on the meta-culture of documentary that is happening in early November. A lot of great people will be presenting, so please check it out:

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CODES and MODES:  The Character of Documentary Culture
A Conference at Hunter College

Dates: November 7, 8 and 9, 2014

For more please go to the website: http://ima-mfa.hunter.cuny.edu/codesandmodes/

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Big Bomb on Campus

September 23, 2014

securitycampusIf you think they’re investing in public education, think again.  This “campus” is part of a trillion dollar effort to revamp America’s nuclear weapons industry.  That’s right, new bombers, missiles, subs, a complete national relapse to the depths of Cold War madness.

Apparently it is clear to US politicians that recent threats like the situations in Eastern Europe and the Middle East will respond well to the threat of global obliteration which is still, very clearly, the heart of security policy.

The photo is from a New York Times article from Sept 22, 2014, “US Ramping Up Major Renewal in Nuclear Arms” by William Broad and David Sanger.

This push on the weapons side is accompanied by an exciting new initiative on the nuclear energy front.  The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has declared that it simply won’t be necessary to bury any nuclear waste in the US.  The decision, announced on August 27th, 2014 (See: http://nrc.einnews.com/article/220571519/rzEpj67MSFKa6uMr basically means that nuclear waste can be stored as long as plant operators want on site.  This basically means that the NRC is acknowledging that it has given up on any plans for secure storage of nuclear waste in the foreseeable future.  Burying nuclear waste was never a great option.  The fact is, no place in the country wants to take it.  Now, we can bury our heads in the sand instead!

 

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JAPAN SYNDROME

November 30, 2013

It’s hard to believe, but the Japanese government finally has a solution for the ongoing mess at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant…  It’s called denial.  Prime Minister Abe’s government is pushing through an official secrets act that offer draconian penalties for revealing government information.  The lower house of Japan’s Diet has approved the bill and the upper house has until December 6 to debate the bill.

The Japan Times story gives a good sense of the direct link between the new secrecy laws and the Fukushima disaster.

See also the New York Times coverage which makes the link to Fukushima clear.

There is a movie here, but I don’t think it will be made.  The quote is from Prime Minister Abe dismissing concerns about Fukushima to the Olympic Committee in Argentina.

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Subway Rothko

SubwayRothko  A return to classic modernism at the MTA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Cold Shutdown @ Two Moon

April 04, 2013

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At the second anniversary of the 3/11 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster, the de-nuclearizing movement in Japan is continuing to grow both in size and in international significance.

See: http://globalvoicesonline.org/2013/03/15/japans-jaded-public-pushes-for-nuclear-truth-post-fukushima/

I am having a screening of Cold Shutdown: Fukushima One Year After, and a discussion of the situation in Japan (and here too!) at Two Moon Art House & Cafe on Sunday April 7 as part of the series

 

MADE IN BROOKLYN – 4 Films by 4 Brooklyn Filmmakers.

The event is hosted by Tami Gold.
Please let folks know, and, of course, please come!
Thanks,
Marty Lucas

WHERE: Two Moon Art House and Cafe • 315 Fourth Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Between 2nd and 3rd St in Park Slope • twomoonbklyn.com
WHEN: Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 3PM

 

Here’s the flyer!
Two Moon Film Flyer Final

 

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Next Stop White Sands

March 18, 2013

I was taking the IRT downtown on a busy afternoon recently. On the 68th St platform I ran into Ivone Margulies, a colleague in the Film and Media Studies Department at Hunter College I hadn’t seen in a while. When the train pulled in we were lucky enough to find seats. As we sat in the busy car I asked her how things were going. Ivone, a film scholar who has written on Chantal Akerman, updated me on her book on cinematic realism. I, a documentary filmmaker, told her about a film I have been working on for the last several years, called Hiroshima Bound. In the film I use my own childhood memories of parents involved in research on nuclear weapons and high energy physics to explore the role of Hiroshima in American memory and my own sense of what it means to be responsible for that historical legacy. I have been particularly interested in flushing out the history of visual representation, examining the legacy of Japanese and American photographers who took still and moving images in the days and months right after the events of July 16, 1945.

After a couple of stops a young man who had been sitting just across from us stood up and approached us. “Everybody in New Mexico should go there!” We looked up. “I went. My English teacher took us. But nobody knows about it.”

“You’re from New Mexico?” I asked.

This young man in his early twenties, Latino, in a suit jacket that was a tight fit over a big body was super earnest. And almost sweating with passion. Speaking loudly,  from necessity, and partly from conviction, he told us that he came from Las Cruces, near the south end of the White Sands Proving Grounds.

“You can’t really get in. But she took us to the Trinity site.”

This was an event he both remembered and felt strongly about. In fact, you could say there were two events, the original explosion, and his own trip many years later. He reiterated how important it was for people to be aware of the legacy of the Trinity bomb, exploded July 16,1945 at the White Sands Proving Grounds in southern New Mexico, and still reverberating today.

As the young man told us his story, a well-dressed middle-aged woman sitting nearby took the opportunity to join the conversation. “I was there. I was at Los Alamos.”

Ivone and I looked at each other.

“I taught at Cornell, and I had a friend, a particle physicist who got us in.”

“When was that?”

“That was in the Seventies.” She went on about how her friend was developing lasers for the military because that was where you could get a research grant at that time.

I told her that I was also interested in the instrumentalization of science that she described, and the bending of research to defense-related goals. That I was trying to figure out how to portray that in a film. As the 6 train continued to rattle its busy way downtown she went into more detail.

“I saw it twenty years later in the first Iraq War. The fuses on the smart bombs… I’d seen them in development.” The woman couldn’t let go of her story or it wouldn’t let go of her.

“ …They let us in because I was there with one of the scientists.”

This is the F train. Manhattan. New York City. The winter of 2013. The young man and the academic both got off at Union Square.

This is a country that is waiting for a chance to talk about this story, about this killing myth. A country that somehow feels these events still bound in passion despite sixty years of myth-making and trauma.

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Trinity Memorial • White Sands NM

 

 

 

 

 

 

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FUKUSHIMA FALLOUT

March 08, 2013

There is an anniversary screening of Cold Shutdown with the Indian Point Safe Energy Coalition!

For more info you can check out the event at https://www.facebook.com/events/482591431790456/

Also, stay tuned for a Japanese language version of Cold Shutdown coming soon.

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Fukushima in the Slope

October 21, 2012

Cold Shutdown: Fukushima One Year After, my recently completed doc, is a visit with Fukushima citizens as they come together in the face of government indifference and ineffectuality to deal with the legacy of nuclear fallout from the Dai Ichi Disaster that still covers thousands of square miles of Japan. The half-hour film is playing at the Park Slope Food Coop on Friday, November 2, at 7:00PM with Iki Nakagawa’s Green Mountain Girls Farm: Sustainability in Action.. It’s a free screening, open to the public, and  I will be presenting the film.. so come check it out!

Park Slope Food Coop • 782 Union Street, Brooklyn, between 6th and 5th Aves.
Friday, November 2, 7PM

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Drop Dead Again!

June 09, 2012

Tighten Your Belt, Bite the Bullet, the 1980 documentary that details the fiscal crisis of New York and Cleveland and the political responses, is playing at Anthology Film Archives on Thursday June 14th at 8:45PM and Saturday, June 16, 6:30PM.  Filmmakers Martin Lucas and Jonathan Miller will be present at the Saturday screening… so come check out my first documentary!

See  Anthology Film Archives

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Welcome

Welcome to martinlucas.net.  This is a new version of the site and still very much under construction.

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