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Marie Curie. The Courage of Knowledge

Sunday, April 09, 2017
3:00 p.m.

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017
9:00 p.m.
YBCA Screening Room

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This unconventional portrait of legendary scientist Marie Curie explores equally her intellectual achievements and self-doubts. Director Marie Noëlle plunges the viewer into Curie's subjective experiences and memories, beginning when she is awarded the Nobel Prize with her husband and research partner, Pierre (Charles Berling). Karolina Gruszka’s stellar performance brings breath and a palpable pulse to Marie’s vulnerability and resilience when she finds herself alone in the world she and Pierre built together. The film is a visual feast, employing soft focus, sun-dappled scenes, and period settings, with compositions often resembling classical paintings. The cinematography, combined with an exquisite original score, evokes another era as well as Marie’s unique perspective. In her research process, Noëlle examined the passionate scientist’s original diaries (kept under restricted access due to continued radiation risks) to bring this formidable woman to the screen with empathy and authenticity. —Laura Henneman

Partnering with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the post-screening discussion after Marie Curie on April 9 will focus on women in science and the ways in which matters have changed (or, in some cases, unfortunately stayed the same) for women in a male-dominated field. Special guests to be announced.

Filmmaker Bio(s)

An author, screenwriter, and filmmaker, Marie Noëlle first studied mathematics and earned a Master of Business before venturing into cinema. Her filmmaking collaboration with her late husband Peter Sehr began in 1979, and together they made several feature films including The Anarchist’s Wife (2008), which was partially inspired by the story of Noëlle’s own family. The film screened at Sundance and won the 2008 Bernhard Wicki Award, a German Cinema Award for peace. Noëlle is also a novelist and author of short stories and theater pieces, and has directed both narrative and documentary films.
Film Details
  • Country(ies): Germany/France/Poland
  • Language(s): French
  • Year: 2016
  • Running time: 95
  • Director(s): Marie Noëlle
  • Producer(s): Marie Noëlle, Mikolaj Pokromski, Ralf Zimmerman
  • Writer(s): Marie Noëlle, Andrea Stoll
  • Cinematographer(s): Michal Englert
  • Editor(s): Isabelle Rathéry, Marie Noëlle, Lenka Fillnerova, Hans Horn
  • Music: Bruno Coulais
  • With: Karolina Gruszka, Arieh Worthalter, Charles Berling

Print Source:
The Society for Arts
1112 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 60642