The Coolidge corner cinema in Brookline made a great start into their 9th season of Science on Screen by arranging a special showing of Memento. This was preceded by an introductory talk by John Gabrieli from MIT, who worked for many years with the patient who was the inspiration for this movie. The patient, H.M., suffered from anterograde amnesia following surgery in 1953 until his death in 2008. He gave a fascinating overview into the neurobiology of amnesia and made it interesting enough to make me do some additional reading on neurology and amnesia.
The Coolidge cinema started this interesting series 8 years ago with support from local sponsors, such as the Museum of Science and are recipients of a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan foundation. Classic movies are introduced by an expert on the science topic depicted in the movie, e.g. Marvin Minsky, who works with artificial intelligence at MIT introduced 2001: A Space Odyssey last year.
The movie series was designed to provide “the perfect combination of entertainment and enlightenment – even for the most science-phobic culture vulture”, but movie-loving scientists can also enjoy classic movies on the big screen.
The introductory talks are not science lectures, but are interesting presentations for a lay audience that make you watch a beloved movie from a different angle.
Science on screen shows every third Monday of the month at the Coolidge cinema (T-stop Coolidge corner, Green C line), tickets are normally sold out the week before, so make sure to book early. The next screening on 21st October is Young Frankenstein with a preceding talk by Dany Spencer Adams, Ph.D., a Principle Investigator at the Tufts Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology, part of the Biology Department at Tufts University.