The reviewers were certainly right on one point—the three hours flew by. I checked my phone just once, after about 2 ½ hours—the movie held your attention that well.
Frankly, I knew little about Oppenheimer beyond his name and a little understanding of his role directing the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos that delivered the atomic bombs that ended World War II after they were dropped on Japan. After seeing the movie Tuesday night, I left with more of an understanding of the conflicts he faced with his personal life and politics versus winning the race to the atom bomb.
I recommend the movie, but catch an early showing unless you’re a real night owl. For our 6:05 p.m. show, we were headed for the parking lot at 9:20 p.m.
Characters included Drs. Edward Teller and E.O. Lawrence (for whom Lawrence Livermore and Lawrence Berkeley labs are named). Teller forcefully advocated the vastly more powerful hydrogen bomb using plutonium and pursued it while Oppenheimer kept the efforts focused on the atomic bomb using enriched uranium. Teller’s advocacy for the hydrogen bomb was a driving force in the establishment of the Livermore Radiation Lab, creating the competition and divergent thinking of people in the nuclear weapons design business.
The shocking news that long-time Livermore winemaker Mitchell Katz died last weekend in an automobile crash was sadly ironic to me.
We have known each other casually since he was making wines at Ruby Hill on Vineyard Avenue before moving to a few different sites in Livermore. He phoned me after my lengthy cover story ran on the Livermore Valley wine industry reaching an inflection point. Not surprisingly, he had some strong opinions. We were talking just before he was taking his annual trip to the British Isles to visit his mom’s burial site (he has taken her ashes there a few years ago).
We agreed we’d talk once he returned and never connected. Katz, who has his roots in construction, built most of his current winery at the corner of Vasco and Tesla roads. He became well known for his reds and his generosity.
Rest in peace Mitch.
You have to wonder what world Assemblywoman Rebecca Kahn Bauer and staff are living in. Before the heat wave that struck last weekend, she fired off the following email missive:
“During one of the hottest summers to date, the East Bay Area will be facing a high heat wave in the coming days. I want to share a few tips, tricks, and important information with you to help everyone get through the heat wave safely. Please see below for resources that will point you to nearby cooling centers and how to sign up for alerts regarding the heat wave.
In fact, other than a couple of other warm days, it’s been a strikingly cool spring and summer. Sacramento only had four days with temps exceeding 90 degrees in June—a sign of just how cool things have been.