Influence from the inside
New Zealand filmmaker Justin Pemberton has won the world’s longest running environmental film festival, Cinemambiente for his feature-length documentary Nuclear Comeback, parts of which were filmed in Chernobyl’s abandoned radioactive control room and core. Guardian reviewer and jury member Leo Hickman writes: “Nuclear Comeback weighs up the pros and cons of nuclear energy in a world that urgently needs to decarbonise its economy. It is thought to be the first time a western film crew has ever been allowed so far inside. In one angst-ridden scene, Pemberton turns to his guide and asks him whether it’s still safe to proceed when the radiation detector pinned to his jacket begins to bleep furiously. He is casually told to walk on … Like the best documentaries, it is engaging, nuanced and avoids preaching its cause.” Nuclear Comeback won Best New Zealand Feature Documentary in 2007.