Experiencing Interruptions?


At the height of the Cold War, the nuclear early-warning system of the Soviet Union reports the launch of intercontinental ballistic missiles from the United States. A Soviet officer on duty suspects, however, that it may be a false alarm.

  • Ella Wright
  • Joe Goodsall
  • Ella Wright
  • Joe Goodsall
    Key Cast
    "Andrej Grebink"
  • Megan Farquhar
    Key Cast
    "Stanislav Petrov"
  • Mark Fenton
    Boom Op
  • Mark Fenton
    Clapper Loader
  • Mark Fenton
    Set PA
  • Project Type:
    Short, Student
  • Genres:
    History, Comedy
  • Runtime:
    5 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    May 28, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    100 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
    Black & White
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - University of Birmingham
Director Biography - Ella Wright

Ella is currently studying for a PhD in the department of Film and Creative Writing at the University of Birmingham, having recently completed her Masters in Film and Television: Research and Production. She is interested in postmodern filmmaking and always looks to experiment with every new project and create something unexpected.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

I felt the script of 'M.A.D' highlighted the futility of nuclear arms, and the danger of an autocratic and overbearing superior power being in control of those weapons. This is a theme that I consider relevant to the past, present, and future. Consequently, despite directly referencing a real-world past event, I wanted to create a liminal visual space that appeared both inside and outside of the script’s temporal setting. In attempting to achieve this I experimented with different ‘looks’, before settling on a part homage to Fritz Lang’s M (filmed itself only slightly prior to the despotic Nazi regime), filming in a ‘Movietone’ 1.19:1 aspect ratio and converting to black and white. These choices serve a dual purpose of engaging with pastiche aesthetics of postmodernist film, destabilising the film’s direct references to reality, whilst simultaneously serving their own narrative purpose; the square aspect ratio reflects the claustrophobia of the locus and the feeling of being helpless as an individual under state rule, and a desaturated colour palette creates a feeling ‘out of time’. A synth-feel soundtrack, however, references the 1980s historical period, whilst self-reflexive title cards have a modern feel, signifying modern works of popular culture. The film’s aesthetic intent is to simultaneously reject and embrace a master narrative of history, subsequently creating contradiction and instability, which in turn highlights its subject matter.