Coming to theatres today, Wednesday, March 5: PARTICLE FEVER
Filmmaker and former physicist Mark Levinson’s look at the launch of the Large Hadron Collider made its debut at Sheffield last year. It went on to screen at the New York Film Festival, Telluride, Vancouver, CPH:DOX, Bergen, Dubai, Palm Springs, and True/False, among others.
The Large Hadron Collider, built over a ten-year span by CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research), is the biggest particle collider in the world, a device to help particle physicists conduct experiments to better understand the workings of the universe. This massive undertaking takes center stage in Levinson’s doc, as the film follows several scientists in the lead-up and completion of the device and its primary goal in finally proving or disproving the existence of the much-written-about Higgs boson, otherwise known as the “God particle.” In showcasing what is essentially the world’s largest science experiment, Levinson smartly uses his subjects, like producer and physicist David Kaplan, to inject humor and humanity into what might otherwise initially seem too complex or special interest to resonate with a general audience. To the contrary, this well-crafted doc – edited by the acclaimed Walter Murch – proves fascinating, offering viewers up-close access to the spectacle of the LHC and the cutting edge research being conducted there, culminating in a genuinely moving climax that should prove inspirational whatever the viewer’s science background.