Current & Upcoming Films
TWO-NIGHT MATHATHON: FOUR FILMS BY GEORGE CSICSERY
Monday, March 18 & Wednesday, March 20
WITH FOUR FILMS BY GEORGE CSICSERY
The Roxie offers a chance to catch up on what you didn’t know about mathematics in a two-night series of documentaries about mathematicians by filmmaker George Csicsery. These films weave the math into deeply human stories about mathematicians and their worlds. Mr. Csicsery will be present IN PERSON for all shows.
Monday, March 18 - Evening One
TAKING THE LONG VIEW: THE LIFE OF SHIING-SHEN CHERN
Bay Area Premiere!
George Csicsery & Martin Davis in conversation with Michael Fox! - After the 7:45 show.
Taking the Long View: The film examines the life of a remarkable mathematician whose classical Chinese philosophical ideas helped him build bridges between China and the West. Shiing-shen Chern (1911-2004) is one of the fathers of modern differential geometry. His work at the Institute for Advanced Study and in China during and after World War II led to his teaching at the University of Chicago in 1949. Next came Berkeley, where he created a world-renowned center of geometry, and in 1981 cofounded the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute. Chern was instrumental in the re-introduction of scientific research into China. During the 1980s, he brought talented Chinese scholars to the United States and Europe. By 1986, with Chinese government support, he established a math institute at Nankai University in Tianjin. Today it is called the Chern Institute of Mathematics. Chern lived in Berkeley for nearly 40 years. Dir: George Csicsery. 2008. 57 minutes. 7:45pm
JULIA ROBINSON AND HILBERT’S TENTH PROBLEM
The story of an important American mathematician is set against a background of mathematical ideas. Julia Robinson, a pioneer among American women in mathematics, rose to prominence in a field where often she was the only woman. Her work, and the exciting story of the path that led to the solution of Hilbert's tenth problem in 1970,
produced an unusual friendship between Russian and American colleagues at the height of the cold war. The story becomes a tour of 20th century mathematics that moves from Paris in 1900, through the United States, to the Soviet Union and back. Depicting the passionate pursuit of an unsolved problem by several individuals in different countries adds to the emotional intensity of this mathematical quest. Dir: George Csicsery. 2008. 57 minutes. 6:30 and 9:00.
Wednesday, March 20 - Evening Two
HARD PROBLEMS: THE ROAD TO THE WORLD'S TOUGHEST MATH CONTEST
The film follows the extraordinarily gifted students representing the United States at the world's toughest math competition—the International Mathematical Olympiad. The film shows the dedication and perseverance of these remarkably talented students and captures the spirit that infuses the mathematical quest.
An increasingly difficult series of tests in the U.S. produces the six top students who go on to Slovenia in 2006 to compete against the best from 90 countries. It is a grueling and exhilarating experience, during which the beauty of mathematics emerges triumphant to unite contestants from around the world. Dir: George Csicsery. 2008. 81 mins. 8:00.
N IS A NUMBER: A PORTRAIT OF PAUL ERDÖS
A man with no home and no job, Erdös (1913–1996) was the most prolific mathematician who ever lived. Erdös inspired generations of mathematicians throughout the world with his insightful approach and wry humor. The film follows him for four years through four countries, presenting his mathematical quest and its personal and philosophical dimensions. Animated sequences illustrate the kinds of mathematical problems Erdös pursued. One of the 20th century’s greatest mathematicians, Erdös would be 100 in 2013. Dir: George Csicsery. 1993. 57 mins. 6:00 & 9:30.