Science on Screen

Unexpected pairings of current, cult and documentary film with lively post-screening discussions by renowned experts in science, technology and medicine.

Each film is a jumping off point for discussion by a compelling speaker, offering opportunities to explore and think about science in new ways.  The perfect combination of entertainment and enlightenment!



Wednesday, September 30 @ 7:00pm

Julian Schnabel’s visual masterpiece based on the inspiring memoirs of Elle France editor Jean-Dominique Bauby, who, at age 43, develops Locked-in Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder characterized by complete paralysis of volunteer muscles except for those that control eye movement.

SPEAKERS: Dr. Kyle Cave and Dr. David Moorman, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, UMass Amherst

TOPIC: Despite new technologies for measuring brain activity, it can still be difficult to communicate with “locked-in” patients, or even to know what they are experiencing. We know little about how brain activity leads to conscious experience, but some new experimental findings may lead to new insights.


28 DAYS LATER (2002)

Wednesday, November 18 @ 7:00pm

Animal rights activists free a group of infected chimpanzees to horrifying results in this speculative sci-fi horror effort from director Danny Boyle (TRAINSPOTTING, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE).

SPEAKER: Dr. Robert L. Dorit, evolutionary biologist and professor of Biological Sciences at Smith College

TOPIC: Why are we still alive? Bacteria, viruses and parasites have evolved myriad ways to exploit the human species, and yet we are still here. Using recent examples, we'll explore the threats we face from infectious diseases, and talk about current and future strategies to ensure our continued survival.