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This edition: Episode #103: "The Lazarus Effect" & "Kingsman: The Secret Service"

Episode Details

Original tape date: March 12, 2015.

First aired: April 17, 2015.

Co-hosts Faith Salie and Dr. Heather Berlin are joined by renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson – Director of The American Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Planetarium – to discuss how Hollywood depicts scientists, particularly in current movies The Lazarus Effect and Kingsman: The Secret Service, and also 1954’s Them!, a horror film about giant mutant ants.

The Lazarus Effect leads to a consideration of popular depictions of the mad, diabolical scientist – who attempts to play God and pays the price, beginning with Mary Shelley's Frankenstein – and the changing ways death has been defined through history and the real scientific implications of reanimating the dead. Contrasted with Hollywood's tendency to make science scary, the hosts and guest agree, is the actually frightening science of climate change that is often ignored.

For Kingsman: The Secret Service, the co-hosts and Tyson consider the neuroscience of aggression and how it might be artificially stimulated without also triggering other reduced-inhibition behaviors.

Distinctions between the lives of actual scientists and those depicted by Hollywood are described; Tyson shares his view that film and television have evolved from diabolical to more human portrayals. Fear of what science can do is discussed as both coming from films and resulting in them.

Science Goes to the Movies is made possible by generous support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Guest List

Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson Director, Hayden Planetatium

  • Robots and Genetics - Part 1
  • Tuesday, May 21 - 7:00am, 1:00pm
  • Robots and Genetics Part 2
  • Thursday, May 30 - 8:00pm
  • Saturday, June 1 - 5:30pm
  • Tuesday, June 4 - 7:00am, 1:00pm
  • TBA
  • Thursday, June 6 - 8:00pm
  • Saturday, June 8 - 5:30pm
  • Sunday, June 9 - 7:30am
  • Tuesday, June 11 - 7:00am, 1:00pm
  • Thursday, June 13 - 8:00pm
  • Saturday, June 15 - 5:30pm
  • Sunday, June 16 - 7:30am
  • Tuesday, June 18 - 7:00am, 1:00pm