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Einstein's Big Idea

Maple Leaf This item is only available for Canadian orders.

Catalogue Number:  WG0140
ISBN Number:  1-593753-17-9
Producer:  WGBH
Subject:  Physics, Science
Language:  English
Grade Level:  9 - 12, Post Secondary
Country Of Origin:  U.S.
Copyright Year:  2005
Running Time:  112
Closed Captions:  Yes


DVD Price:  $39.95
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Everyone's heard of it, but what does E=mc2 - the world's most famous equation - really mean? And why did it change the world?

With brilliant period recreations, NOVA dramatizes how an obscure young patent clerk, Albert Einstein, came up with his shattering 1905 discovery that the realms of matter and energy are inescapably linked. An accessible, suspenseful epic, Einstein's Big Idea reveals the roots of his astonishing breakthrough in the human stories of men and women whose innovative thinking across four centuries helped lead to E=mc2, and ultimately unleashed the power of the atom.

Here are stories rich with achievement and failure, feuds and duplicity, love and rivalry, politics and revenge: Michael Faraday, the penniless blacksmith's son who fought the ridicule of the scientific establishment; Antoine Lavoisier, the cool-headed experimenter who fell victim to the guillotine; and Lise Meitner, the physicist who weathered Nazi persecution and personal betrayal on her path to discovering the splitting of the atom.

As one discovery builds on the next, Einstein's Big Idea shows how Einstein's saga began with the personal lives of these pioneers and their years of persistence, ingenuity, sacrifice, and heroic struggle against the odds.

The film stars Aidan McArdle (Ella Enchanted) as Einstein, and Shirley Henderson (Bridget Jones and Harry Potter) as Einstein's first wife, Mileva Maric.

Special DVD features include: materials and activities for educators; scene selections; closed captions; and described video for the visually impaired.

"The acting is excellent and the scientific depictions right on point. Highly recommended..." -- Library Journal

"Whatever dribs of information nonscientists remember about Einstein's genius, this smartly written, handsomely produced NOVA special fills in the blanks and then some. . . .Fascinating stuff." -- Daily Variety


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