The Days

The Days

TV-14

netflix

An admirable yet harrowing recounting of Japan's worst natural-turned-nuclear disaster

7.1

TV Show

Japan
Japanese
Drama
2023
Fumiyo Kohinata, Kaoru Kobayashi, Ken Mitsuishi

TLDR

As detailed and thoughtful of a series on the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident one could hope for

What it's about

The story of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant disaster from the perspectives of those who were directly involved

The take

The series follows three perspectives: a government official, a Tokyo Electric Power Company employee, and a worker at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, each with their respective teams tackling the aftermath of the March 11, 2001 earthquake and tsunami. From the reporting updates to the public to the dedication of first responders, 'The Days' excels at piecing together the macro- and micro-decisions that went into saving the residents of Fukushima. The series deepens the narrative to be more than a mere recollection with its scenes of the families of the victims and the residents as they evacuate their homes. Its steady pace, emotional close-ups, and suspenseful score capture the harrowing atmosphere of Japan's worst natural disaster. 

 

What stands out

Employing slow-motion sequences, suspenseful scores, and long eye-level shots allowed the impact of the disaster to sink in. It tempered the rush and panic, giving viewers enough time to experience how long the days felt. Moments of lingering eye contact (or something as simple as following a hose as it fills with water) highlighted the worries and the seeds of hope in every person fighting to save Fukushima. The overall cinematography and editing were imbued with emotion and respect, making it much more than a fictional retelling.

Comments

Excellent movie. I watched the entire program over a two day period. The acting is good and the scenes are riveting. Slow motion special effects and close ups on actors add to the tension and anxiety you feel throughout all the episodes. The only criticism I have is the very end with the narration of the days following the incident are repetitive and choppy and take away from the prior episodes. I give it a 8 out of 10.

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