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What Akiko saw at the centre of the Hiroshima blast, and the indelible mark it left

On 6 August 1945, 20-year-old Akiko Takakura was working alongside a friend at the Bank of Hiroshima when her life was upended in an instant. She was just 300 m from the hypocentre of the atomic blast that the United States had unleashed on the city that day. Gravely wounded, Takakura would somehow escape with her life. However, the lingering shadow of the carnage she witnessed that day would haunt her for decades to come. Through animations seemingly inspired by Japanese woodblock prints, the short film Obon (2018) from the Berlin-based filmmakers Anna Samo and André Hörmann captures Takakura’s memories of the blast, and the permanent mark they left on her, from the vantage of more than 70 years later. With an unsparing sequence depicting the brutal violence of bombing, the work highlights how the attack unleashed horrors that Takakura couldn’t begin to comprehend, and how it altered her relationship with her strict father.

Directors: Anna Samo, André Hörmann

Producers: André Hörmann, Christian Vizi, Günther Hörmann

Website: Obon Film

17 November 2022
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