TIFF 2015 Review: Return of the Atom
Is it possible for a documentary about the most catatrsophic events, (trouble with a nuclear reactor) to somehow be hilarious?
In the case of Mika Taanila and Jussi Eerola’s Return of the Atom, the results would be almost comical if the events unfolding were not so Sisyphean.
Or perhaps this sense of never moving forward is what makes the film so humourous in the first place, despite the fact that so much money and so much time is being completely wasted in Taanila and Eerola’s account.
Focusing on building one of the world’s first power plants in the west after Chernobyl’s meltdown frightened people away from nuclear power, features a very amusing scene involving a struggle to say the name of the province of Saskatchewan, (yes, really). As well, Return of the Atom features scenes of boneheaded bureaucracy that are so silly that require a laugh being given. This, rather than seriously consider the implications of using too much nuclear power, and not arriving at an alternative fuel solution may be the only viable resource left.
As well, a chilling conclusion places the entire exercise into a greater sense of perception, but yet shows that this plant, the OL3, may never actually get built. The delays keep on coming, unabated.