Nuclear Disasters

'My Atomic Aunt' and other docs bring foreign cultures to American audiences

'My Atomic Aunt' and other docs bring foreign cultures to American audiences

Echoes from foreign lands have been edging deeper into the American imagination. Terrorism, financial meltdowns, wars and refugees spin out in real-time news, recurring glimpses of ancient transgressions that at once divide and bind us.

But hand-held cameras, lap-top editing and video streaming have afforded documentary filmmakers a wide expanse to bring intricate, indigenous stories to global audiences.

The languages are different, the cultures diverse, but each tale is a small, personal and fleeting chapter on a planet of 7.4 billion people: The fisherman in Borneo shares a bond with the cod chaser in the North Atlantic; the Syrian war refugee is kin in...

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