“Creation” Premieres Today

CreationMoviePosterBut only in a handful of cities: New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, and Washington, D.C. According to the National Center of Science Education, if the movie does well its opening weekend (check out our review), it could start playing in other cities. We’ll keep you posted.

Darwin Biopic “Creation” Hits Theaters on Friday

From entertainment reporter Kimberly Roots:

Charles Darwin’s passion for nature, for chasing the dips and pirouettes of evolution, is as commonplace as frog dissection to anyone who’s ever taken a high school biology class. But the makers of Creation, the new biopic dealing with the publication of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, wisely chose to frame this passion in the context of something else of dire importance to the famous scientist: his love for his family. Darwin’s legacy is stronger for it.
Based on Annie’s Box, a biography by the scientist’s great-great-grandson, Randal Keynes, Creation centers on Darwin’s home life following the unexpected death of his eldest child, Annie. Thrown into deep depression and paralyzed by grief, Paul Bettany’s Darwin tries to continue to develop his theory of evolution but is plagued by mysterious illnesses and hallucinations of his precocious child (the perfectly cast newcomer Martha West). Both are induced by guilt made all the worse by the cold crevice that exists between Darwin and wife Emma, a devout Anglican Christian sure her husband’s work will damn him for eternity.
The film’s sentiment is strong, its visuals even stronger. Simple scenes of particles floating in the sunlight or of luminescence trailing behind the Beagle take on an added luster when contrasted with Darwin’s talk of “brute survival.” After he writes Emma a letter apologizing for his loss of faith, we immediately flash back to an outing where Charles and the children walk through the forest. The quiet, the colors, the way Darwin reverently crouches down to watch a kill-or-be-killed moment between two animals drives home the point: He hasn’t lost faith at all, merely found it somewhere Victorian society was unwilling to look.
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What Paul Bettany Learned Making “Creation”

“I think it’s about tolerance of ideas. Tolerance of other people’s ideas,” Paul Bettany tells BlackBook about the Charles Darwin biopic that hits theaters January 22 (he stars as Darwin).
“I think that it’s a large message in the movie that isn’t really hammered home, but it’s certainly a message that one can glean from the Darwin’s marriage. He was agnostic, but when the child dies he goes toward science and his wife goes toward religion. And somehow they go on together, looked after each other, supported each other and coexisted while having these wildly different opinions. His wife absolutely believed in heaven and hell and she didn’t change. And somehow we are getting less and less able to be able to have different opinions and still be able to be at peace with one another. I mean, you go on the Internet and people get so angry at Charles Darwin. It’s so weird. I mean, calm down. So you don’t believe in it? Just calm down.”

Software Writes “Ideal” (But Not Great) Bowie Song

University of Hertfordshire health psychologist Nick Troop used some linguistics software to analyze the relationship between the words David Bowie uses in a song and its pop chart success and found that the most commercially successful songs are those that contain more words related to social processes (like “talk” and “share”) and positive emotions (like “joy” and “elegant”). Songs that have words associated with touching, moving, or death were less successful.
That video above? Based on his analysis of Bowie’s vocabulary, Troop wrote “Team, Meet Girls; Girls, Meet Team,” the “ideal David Bowie song for health and success.”

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