Testament

  • 1983
  • 1 HR 30 MIN
  • PG
  • Drama, Science Fiction, War

Set in a small town in northern California, this flawed but moving film begins by establishing the pattern of everyday life for an average American family, then rips it apart by introducing the nightmare of nuclear apocalypse. Tom and Carol Wetherly (William Devane and Jane Alexander), the loving parents of three children (Lukas Haas, Ross Harris, and Roxana...read more

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Set in a small town in northern California, this flawed but moving film begins by establishing the pattern of everyday life for an average American family, then rips it apart by introducing the nightmare of nuclear apocalypse. Tom and Carol Wetherly (William Devane and Jane Alexander), the

loving parents of three children (Lukas Haas, Ross Harris, and Roxana Zal), joke, bicker, and make love until one day Tom doesn't come home from work because war has broken out. Thereafter, the film shows the effects of fallout, both physical and psychological, on the little town and particularly

the Wetherlys. As living conditions deteriorate, looting begins, and people start dying, including two of the Wetherly children; Carol and her surviving son search for solace in the past, stirring their memories with home movies of happier times. Ultimately, they find the will to go on into the

bleak future.

While TESTAMENT is less sensational than the similar TV movie, "The Day After," first-time director Lynne Littman lays on the sentiment and symbolism a little thickly, and some may find the pre-disaster sequences slow going. The acting is undeniably strong, particularly Alexander's heartfelt

performance.

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