38 Minutes

Directed by Mike & Steve

An immersive documentary that allows the user to experience the events of January 13th 2018 – where an alert was issued to every citizen of Hawaii, via TV, radio, and SMS: BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.

For 38 minutes – the time it took the government to retract this false alarm – the people of Hawaii were forced to confront first-hand the reality of today’s real, growing and urgent nuclear threat. Cellular communication networks collapsed, and panic took hold of the population. Within minutes there were traffic accidents as people raced to be with their loved ones. Pharmacies were looted. Desperate parents forced their children into storm drains, unable to explain why. 1.4m people suddenly had to contemplate the very real possibility that they were about to die.

This chaos lasted a little over half an hour. But, for many Hawaiians, the trauma of that morning has long outlasted the false alarm. In the words of one Kauai resident, “The alert was false, but the nuclear threat is real… here this morning, we experienced it personally, felt the terror.”

Immersive documentary 38 Minutes weaves together the intimate testimonies of those who lived through these moments, using a combination of volumetric capture and CGI. The result is a 38-minute VR narrative with the emotional weight to show today’s clear-and-present nuclear threat in a new and disturbing light.

38 Minutes is produced in partnership with:

Atlas V
Princeton University’s Program on Science & Global Security
The Macarthur Foundation
XR for Change

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