Faithful readers of Cosmic Variance will remember that the documentary The Atom Smashers will be on the PBS show Independent Lens on Tuesday Nov. 25. On the west coast it’s at 10:30 pm; it could be other times in other places. I am in the film, at least the latter half of it, quite a bit, including one of the final long quotes, which I really like.
I’ve seen the film three times now, once the night before the world premiere at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, then at the premiere, and then at Fermilab a month later. At both showings we sat on panels and took questions afterward from the audience – lots of good questions, too, I have to say.
Every time I see it I like it better and appreciate what Clayton and Monica have achieved. Apparently the judges at the Paris Film Festival thought so too, awarding it their Audacity Award. And Ben makes particle physics look as cool as we particle physicists know it is…
Alan Boyle has a very nice article on the film over at his blog, Cosmic Log, at MSNBC. He captured the spirit of the film well, and to my delight got my most cryptic quote to him correct, word for word!
Here is another very insightful take on the film by Anthony Kaufman at SEED Magazine. And though I linked to it before, here is Julia Keller’s piece from the Chicago Tribune, one of the first to appear.
The version appearing on TV is a 53 minute version, rather short compared with the 68 minute version that we’ve seen so far. It will be interesting to see what Clayton and Monica managed to find to remove; I liked it all!