A Day Called X (1957)

Run Time - 30 min.  |  
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CBS pre-empted its usual Sunday morning public affairs lineup on December 8, 1957, to air this prophetic half-hour film. The question: How would a major metropolis react when threatened with a nuclear attack. To find out, the city of Portland, Oregon is placed under a simulated nuclear alert, covering the first two hours after enemy aircraft is spotted heading towards the metropolis. Under the guidance of Portland's then-mayor Terry Shrunk, Civil Defense warnings are posted on radio and TV, and the process of evacuation is swiftly coordinated under the watchful eye of appointed officials. Eventually, virtually all 415,000 residents of Portland are herded into bomb shelters, some six miles from town (which was then considered a "safe" distance). Actor Glenn Ford serves as narrator for this daunting 1950s time capsule.