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Surviving the Tsunami - My Atomic Aunt
A film by Kyoko Miyake
Germany/Japan, 2013, 52 minutes, Color, DVD, English/Japanese, Subtitled
Order No. W141115
Film director Kyoko Miyake remembered Namie, a fishing village ravaged by the 2011 Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, as her childhood paradise. Revisiting her family’s hometown after 10 years abroad, Miayke’s multilayered documentary examines the disaster’s profound personal, social and environmental impact.

While Namie’s younger generations have permanently relocated elsewhere, Miyake’s Aunt Kuniko, like other older residents, has clung to dreams of eventually returning to her home. Over the course of a year, Miyake follows this warm, indomitable businesswoman as she recalls happy family memories and strives to adapt to life outside the contamination zone. In the process, Kuniko starts questioning her unconditional trust in Fukushima’s plant operators and pro-nuclear past in a community that once hoped to house a nuclear power station.

A timely reminder of Fukushima’s continuing meltdown, this insightful, often funny film offers fresh perspectives on Japanese national identity and today’s most pressing global concerns around nuclear energy.


  • Hamburg Film Festival
  • Dok Leipzig
  • EDS International Documentary Festival

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    "An insightful and surprisingly funny story of a family adjusting to life after the tsunami. Through the attempts of the warm and indefatigable Aunt Kuniko to adapt at her ripe age, this deeply personal film explores notions of homeland, nuclear power and family love."
    BBC Storyville

    "Haunting and moving ….as hard-hitting as it is simply presented, MY ATOMIC AUNT is a timely reminder that the impact of the Fukushima disaster is still being felt...."
    Jon Lynes
    Time Out London

    "..quirky and affecting film.."
    The Guardian

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    Surviving the Tsunami - My Atomic Aunt is included in the following Special Collections.
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WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Ending the Silence, BODY IMAGE, and AFRICAN-AMERICAN: Celebrate the Lives of African-American Women.

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us