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Cinema's Military Industrial Complex$
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Haidee Wasson and Lee Grieveson

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780520291508

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520291508.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 04 July 2022

Framing the Bomb in the West

Framing the Bomb in the West

The View from Lookout Mountain

(p.210) 12 Framing the Bomb in the West
Cinema's Military Industrial Complex

Susan Courtney

University of California Press

Focused on the period of atmospheric (above-ground) nuclear weapons testing in the continental United States, from 1945 to 1963, this chapter, written by Susan Courtney, does two things. First, it describes some of the basic conditions and infrastructure that shaped the proliferation of films of nuclear weapons tests, including the U.S. government’s secret military film studio dedicated to this work in the hills above Los Angeles, known as Lookout Mountain Air Force Station or Lookout Mountain Laboratory. Second, it turns to the representational legacy that resulted, which was by no means limited to films made by or for the military. More specifically, it considers how footage of atomic tests in New Mexico and at the Nevada Test Site helped to shape the filmic record of nuclear weapons—and popular cultural memory—by framing the bomb in the desert West, arguably the screen space of American exceptionalism.

Keywords:   atomicbomb, nuclear weapons, testing, film production, secret military film studio, Lookout Mountain, West, Nevada Test Site, Trinity

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