Focus - Focus: Cinema and Science - | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián

Focus: Cinema and Science


During his recent visit to the Basque Film Archive, the great Bertrand Tavernier related an anecdote. Together with his son, Nils Taver- nier, he filmed a documentary about a French suburb for six months. There he interviewed, among others, a retired factory worker whose story proved strangely touching. Sometime afterwards, Nils and Bertrand visited the man again and found him seriously ill and much weakened. On saying goodbye to Bertrand at the threshold of his house, the worker looked at him and said: “Keep transmitting”. For Ber- trand Tavernier, these were some of the most moving words he had ever heard. There was something of the “sacred” in them, like a kind of order given to cinema directors like himself. Since then, he tells us, everything he does, he does so, thinking of that man.

For three years now, there has been a firm intention shared between the Donostia Inter- national Physics Center (DIPC) and the Basque Film Archive: to transmit cinematic culture and scientific culture. The efforts of the San Sebas- tian International Film Festival join us now, which is a reason for celebration. The formula for our project is based on film presentations and debates after viewing films with scientists. Throughout the two previous years, audiences faithfully attending have seemed to want to tell us – just as the worker told Tavernier – to keep transmitting. And we are working on that in this third edition.

Ágora (Alejandro Amenábar, 2009) immerses us in the exciting debates between religion and science since Antiquity through the ex- ceptional figure of Hipatia. Why the classic Gilda (Charles Vidor, 1946)? There are 183.84 weighty reasons (atomically speaking). Gattaca (Andrew Niccol, 1997) will take us to the field of genetic manipulation. Proxima (Alice Winocour, 2019) is one of the gems that shone the brightest in the Official Section of the last San Sebastián Film Festival. Her (Spike Jonze, 2013) is artificial intelligence and much more. Autómata (Gabe Ibáñez, 2014) is a dystopian film that delves in depth into the world of robotics. The Tree of Life (2011) by Terrence Malick won the Cannes Film Festival and grows larger on the silver screen... Our usual review of science fiction classics this year features The Man with the X-ray Eyes (Roger Corman, 1963) and Woman in the Moon (Fritz Lang, 1929) two magnificent examples. In Awakenings (Penny Marshall, 1990), we approach neurology through the eyes of Oliver Sacks, whereas in Ad Astra (2019), James Gray combines the inner journey with space adventure.

We keep transmiting.


10/01/2020 (19:00)

ÁGORA (Alejandro Amenábar, 2009)

* Presentation: Pedro Miguel Etxenike [Physicist; Universidad del País Vasco (UPV/EHU); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC)]


16/01/2020 (19:00)

GILDA (Charles Vidor, 1946)

* Presentation: Rosa Errazkin [Chemist; Laboratorium Bergara]


23/01/2020 (19:00)

GATTACA (Andrew Niccol, 1997)

* Presentation: Leire Escajedo [Jurist and biologist; Universidad del País Vasco (UPV/EHU)]


30/01/2020 (19:00) 

PROXIMA (Alice Winocour, 2019)

* Presentation: Silvia Bonoli [Physicist; Ikerbasque; Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC)]


06/02/2020 (19:00)

HER (Spike Jonze, 2013)

* Presentation: Gustavo Ariel Schwartz [Physiscist; Centro de Física de Materiales (CSIC-UPV/EHU); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC)]


13/02/2020 (19:00)

AUTÓMATA (Gabe Ibáñez, 2014)

* Presentation: Concepción Alicia Monje [Engineer; Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M)], Gabe Ibáñez [film director]


20/02/2020 (19:00)

THE TREE OF LIFE –El árbol de la vida– (Terrence Malick, 2011)

* Presentation: Carlos Briones [Chemist; Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA)]


05/03/2020 (19:00)

EL HOMBRE CON RAYOS X EN LOS OJOS –X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes–  (Roger Corman, 1963)

* Presentation: Javier Aizpurua [Physicist; Centro de Física de Materiales (CSIC-UPV/EHU); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC)]


14/03/2020 (19:00)

EMAKUMEA ILARGIAN / LA MUJER EN LA LUNA –Frau im Mond– (Fritz Lang, 1929)

* Live music: Javier Pérez de Azpeitia (piano).

* Presentation: Ane Sarasola [Physicist; Universidad del País Vasco (UPV/EHU); Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC)]


11/07/2020 (19:00)

DESPERTARES –Awakenings– (Penny Marshall, 1990)


22/07/2020 (19:00)

AD ASTRA (James Gray, 2019)


  • Date: Friday, 10 January 2020 > Thursday, 26 March 2020
  • Location: Cinema
Focus: Cinema and Science: