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Witness a Drone's Eye View of Chernobyl's Urban Decay

Filmmaker Danny Cooke offers an aerial perspecive on 30-year decay of Chernobyl.
GIF by Beckett Mufson

You don't have to be a history buff to be fascinated by Chernobyl, the radioactive city in Ukraine that was abanoned by its inhabitants because of a catastrophic nuclear disaster in 1986. The 14,000 citizens in the nearby city of Pripyat were forced to abandon their homes due to radiation, leaving behind an almost intact city full of slowly decaying Soviet-era relics. The resulting creepiness has fascinated many artists, including photographer Guillaume Herbaut, GIF-maker Christiaan Welzel, and filmmaker Danny Cooke, with his short film, Postcards From Pripyat, Chernobyl.


"Armed with a camera and a dosimeter geiger counter I explored," Cooke writes in the video's description. "There was something serene, yet highly disturbing about this place."

Along with his guide, a local Ukranian who goes by the name Stalker, Cooke used a drone to capture sweeping shots of the famously creepy abanoned amusement park, as well as some charming residential shots of decaying walls, children's toys, and gas masks. Cooke got the opportunity to shoot Postcards From Chernobyl while collecting footage for a 60 Minutes episode, Chernobyl: The Catastrophe That Never Ended.

Watch Cooke's full video in all of its spine-chilling beauty below.

Visit Cooke's website here or Vimeo page here to see more of his work.


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Watch A Drone Zoom Through The Ruins Of A Cyanide Factory