88 Hours: The Fukushima Nuclear Meltdown
The Best of Festival (Documentary)
March 11 2011, 2:46 pm. One of the largest earthquakes in Japanese history hits the East of Japan. A gigantic tsunami caused by this earthquake later triggered a complete power outage at the nuclear power station in Fukushima, which led to three simultaneous meltdowns. Eighty-eight hours later, on March 15, 7 am, a large amount of radioactive material was released from reactor No.2, resulting in a Level 7 nuclear accident, the highest class. Five years have passed since the accident, and details of the situation at that time have now emerged through various investigations and exclusive interviews with more than 500 people who were involved. What actually happened at ground zero? Through re-enactments and interviews, viewers will witness for the first time the complete picture of the nuclear accident in Fukushima during those fateful first 88 hours.
Design Ah! #109
This episode gives viewers the chance to observe the countless variations there are for video game controllers, all of which are results of the pursuit for good operability. The “Crests” segment reveals how traditional Japanese crests—which have been handed down since the 13th century—are actually drawn and designed.
Tuning the Battle: Behind the Chopin Piano Competition
Held every five years, the International Chopin Piano Competition attracts the world’s top young pianists vying fiercely for a chance at stardom. But for the four piano manufacturers who supply instruments for the contest, the event also provides a supreme opportunity for public exposure. How many pianists will select their piano to play? What instrument will the winner use? In the latest competition held in the autumn of 2015, the fates of the instrument makers rested with company piano tuners who were nearly all Japanese. All of them had to overcome a series of challenging problems. Who was victorious?
MIRACLE BODY: Russia's Golden Mermaids
This documentary scientifically investigates two of Russia’s top synchronized swimmers. It reveals how their bodies have evolved to gain an ability akin to that of aquatic mammals. Russia's golden duo shows how years of targeted training can turn the impossible into the possible.
Rakugo The Movie (Okiku's Plates/The Wallet)
Rakugo is Japan’s unique traditional art of storytelling. Using no costumes or stage sets, it’s performed by a solo performer who narrates and plays all the parts while sitting on a pillow cushion. The dialogue, gestures and timing all stimulate listeners’ imaginations, but many people today tend to think of rakugo as long, monotonous and difficult to understand. Rakugo, The Movie combines traditional storytelling with cinematic images to create charming onscreen comedies.
The Brave: Wrongful Conviction Lawyer
With a conviction rate of 99.9%, the chance of winning an acquittal in Japan is 1 in 1,000. But Kaku Imamura, a wrongful conviction lawyer, has won 14 cases. Combined with interviews and CG imagery, this episode explores how Imamura braves the criminal justice system and defends the wrongfully convicted.
The Great Amazon: The Last“Isolados”Unknown People of the Amazon
"Isolados": This is the name given to indigenous people deep in the Amazon who had almost no contact with the outside world for 100 years. The existence of the Isolados had long been only known through rumors and legends, even locally. However, with the expansion of forest clearing in recent years, sightings of the Isolados have become much more frequent, and such encounters have led to bloody, and sometimes fatal consequences. Faced with the emergence of the Isolados, the Peruvian government decides to meet with and “civilize” the indigenous people. However, as the Isolados have no immunity to common pathogens, contact with the “civilized world” comes with the risk of their extinction. NHK traveled to a remote outpost to document one such meeting with people who experts say may disappear in as little as 2 years.
When Caregivers Kill Within the Family
Documentary Social Issues
“Caregiving murders”—when people who are exhausted from caregiving kill or attempt to kill a family member. Such incidents occur once every two weeks in Japan. While many of those involved are reluctant to talk, 11 people consented to interviews. A man deeply committed to caregiving killed his wife of 42 years after she begged him, “Make sure I die.” An unemployed man was pushed beyond his limits by caring for his mother with dementia. The reality that comes to light through their testimony is one for which no easy solutions exist. An NHK survey revealed that 26% of the caregiving murder incidents took place in the first year of care, and that 75% of those individuals had utilized caregiving support services. What caused these people to cross the line? The program poses these unanswerable questions to the audience.
Asia Insight "Home Alone China"
Documentary Social Issues
Over the past few decades, millions of people from rural China have flooded to the cities in search of wealth, but many choose to leave their children behind at home with their aging grandparents. An estimated one-fifth of China’s minors currently live in such a situation. Many become emotionally unstable and suffer from a severe sense of isolation.
We focus on several lonely children and an elderly volunteer who tries to ensure their well-being.
Miracle Lesson - World's Greatest Coaches and their Students: Basketball Muggsy Bogues(USA)
What happens when the world’s greatest coaches have a chance to teach children? This documentary series explores how children grow during a week of special lessons with such a coach. (The show also distills the essence of coaching by highlighting words of wisdom from these guest coaches.) This episode features Tyrone “Muggsy” Bogues – a legendary American basketball player who had a 14-year career in the NBA, despite standing just 5 feet 3 inches tall. The shortest player in NBA history, he directed his team on-court as the playmaker. Muggsy, now 50, visits a boys’ basketball team from a public middle school in old-town Tokyo, for a week of special coaching. The boys are low on confidence and lack game experience, but with Muggsy’s encouragement, they amaze their parents and teachers as they improve and grow through the week.
Cosmic Front: Stargazing in Bolivia & Chile VR
This 4K 360 VR image created by NHK shows the starry sky and its reflection on the water surface at Salar de Uyuni known as the world's most beautiful place. It is a huge salt flat located at an altitude of 3,656 meters near the crest of the Bolivian Andes. And the ALMA observatory in Atacama, Chile. NHK captured this grand sight using a very special 4K UHD ultra-sensitive 360 degrees action camera it had developed to capture high quality video images which can even be shown on giant screens like a planetarium system.
Runaway Women Eps. 1: Wound of Innocence
Rieko is released from prison after serving 8 years for a murder that she didn’t commit. She searches for her close friend Azumi, who betrayed her by refuting her truthful alibi. Rieko experiences a cold reception in the outside world after years of suffering. Detective Sakuma, whose severe interrogation contributed to Rieko’s conviction, tries to help her reestablish herself in society. While feeling remorseful, he’s also afraid that Rieko’s anger will lead to another tragedy. Meanwhile, Rieko encounters a mysterious young woman named Mio, who shows no emotional change even when she kills a man…