Dark Circle


Roxie Theater Sun, Apr 23, 2017 12:30 PM
Film Info
Director:Judy Irving
Christopher Beaver
and Ruth Landy
Year of Production:1982
Premiere Status:Film Classic
Topic:Film Classic
Bay Area
First 100 Days
Environmental Health
Running Time:82 min.


35th Anniversary screening on 35mm!

From Rocky Flats to the Eniwetok Atoll, this award-winning 1982 film crafts a complicated science lesson about nuclear weapons into a human-interest story about Plutonium’s deadly intentional and unintentional effects. Roger Ebert said, "It is a record of reckless mishandling of nuclear wastes, criminal disregard for the rights of American citizens being poisoned in their own homes, and bizarre nuclear experiments that resemble nothing so much as a bunch of mad scientists playing with their toys." Now 35 years old, this Emmy Award winner deserves a new look in an age of flippancy about nuclear proliferation. – Karen Topakian

- Grand Prize, Nonfiction Feature, Sundance Film Festival, 1983
- Academy Award Nominee, Best Documentary Feature, 1983
- National Emmy Award, Outstanding Individual Achievement in News & Documentary, 1990

Judy Irving and Ruth Landy, filmmakers; Raye Fleming, Diablo Canyon nonviolent civil disobedience activist and main character in the film; Stephen Most, Stories Make The World

35mm print courtesy of The Oakland Museum of California.

Community Partners: Berkeley Film Foundation; Mothers for Peace


Included Shorts

Arrested (Again) (5min) More

Additional Information

Judy IrvingJudy Irving is a Sundance-and-Emmy-Award-winning filmmaker whose theatrical credits include The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, a feature documentary about the relationship between a homeless street musician and a flock of wild parrots in San Francisco; Pelican Dreams, about California brown pelicans and the people who know them best; and Dark Circle, a personal film about the links between nuclear power and weapons. In 2015 Judy was invited to become a voting member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

Chris BeaverChristopher Beaver produces and directs documentaries and special media projects concerned with the environment. He teaches documentary and narrative film production, cinemtography, and digital journalism. Among his films are Dark Circle, Racing to Zero, and Tulare - The Phantom Lake. A recipient of MacDowell and Guggenheim fellowships, Christopher’s additional awards include a National Television Emmy, a Certificate of Special Merit from the Documentary Committee of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and a Grand Prize in Documentary from the US (now Sundance) Film Festival.

Ruth LandyRuth Landy is a filmmaker and communication professional with a longstanding commitment to global development and human rights.  She co-produced and directed Dark Circle, the award winning documentary feature which chronicles the human impact of the Atomic Age. She also wrote and directed Places for the Soul, a film portrait of architect Christopher Alexander and his quest to build "living places" in California and Japan. Ruth’s international career includes media and communication assignments on five continents for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and other global organizations. She has now returned to San Francisco, working as a principal consultant for her firm, Strategic Communication for Social Impact.