ATOMIC CAFÉ: The Noisiest Corner in J-Town

Directed by Akira Boch, Tadashi Nakamura

In the late 1970’s, when L.A.’s punk rock scene was exploding, an unlikely family-owned restaurant in Little Tokyo started by Japanese Americans returning from America’s WWII concentration camps became one the scene’s most popular hang-outs. That’s when Sansei “Atomic Nancy” with her “take-no-prisoners” punk make-up and demeanor took the café over from her parents and cranked up the jukebox. Infamous for its eclectic clientele—from Japanese American locals and kids from East L.A. to yakuza and the biggest rock stars of the day—the Atomic Café became an important part of L.A.’s punk rock history.

Plays in

Film Stills from Providence, Sing Me a Lullaby, Atomic Cafe, and Within Their Gates

Excavated Memories

Employing found footage and interviews, and spanning multiple decades and cultures, these eclectic films all nonetheless reveal the…