Happy Pi Day! Accept nosotros lost yous already? Don’t worry — we’ll explain. In mathematics, the Greek letter Pi, or π, is used to represent a mathematical abiding. Used in mathematics and physics, Pi is divers in Euclidean geometry as the ratio of a circumvolve’due south circumference to its diameter. And, approximately, π is equal to three.14159 — which brings us to Pi Twenty-four hours.
Historic on March 14 (a.k.a. 3/14, because three.14 are the start three digits of the constant π), Pi 24-hour interval was founded in 1988 by physicist Larry Shaw. Now, mathematicians, scientists and nerds alike gloat this pseudo-holiday — sometimes with Pi Pie.
According to mathematics professor William 50. Schaaf, who wrote near the constant in his piece of work
Nature and History of Pi, “Probably no symbol in mathematics has evoked as much mystery, romanticism, misconception and human interest as the number Pi.” So, if you’re feeling a little more excited almost math than usual thanks to Pi Day, these films can help you marker the occasion.
A Brilliant Young Mind
A Brilliant Immature Mind
(released nether the championship
outside of the U.Southward.), stars
Sexual activity Educational activity’due south Asa Butterfield as Nathan, a teenage mathematics prodigy who has problem connecting with others. Instead, Nathan finds comfort in numbers. But that condolement grows into a new life path entirely when he’s chosen to represent the U.K. in the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO).
Taking inspiration from the documentary
Beautiful Young Minds
(2007), Butterfield’s character is based on Daniel Lightwing, an IMO silver medalist who is also on the autism spectrum disorder. Although this might sound like well-trodden (and often poorly executed) Hollywood fare,
A Brilliant Young Mind
is perceptive, clever and total of heart. And, unlike other films (ahem, 2001’s
A Cute Heed…), this 1 doesn’t veer into cringe-territory while centering folks with neurodevelopmental conditions or mental illnesses and disorders.
This Hindi-linguistic communication biographical drama centers on mathematician Shakuntala Devi, who is played brilliantly past Vidya Balan. Dubbed the “human figurer,” Devi showed prodigy-level math skills from a immature age. During the 1930s, her family discovered that she could solve circuitous math issues — all in her head.
As one might expect, Devi becomes a globe-renowned mathematician. When she marries and has a daughter, Devi realizes that she misses doing “math shows”. And while she has no trouble balancing equations, balancing her professional and personal lives might be a tad more than complicated.
Have you ever watched a sports drama and felt the sudden urge to pick up soccer, football, ice skating or whatever it is you lot’re watching? Well,
might simply give you the urge to perform circuitous mathematical equations. Seriously, Taraji P. Henson, who plays real-life NASA pioneer and icon Katherine Johnson, makes chalkboard math look
Based on Margot Lee Shetterly’south 2016 book of the same name,
traces how Johnson and her peers — played by Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe — non but helmed the U.Southward. efforts in the “Infinite Race”, just blazed trails for Black women in a field that’south dominated by white men. While the film isn’t always historically accurate, information technology does shine a light on unsung heroes like Johnson, thus bringing more visibility to the history textbooks often fail to mention.
Stand and Deliver
Added to the National Picture Registry by the Library of Congress in 2011,
Stand and Deliver
is 1 of those films that, upon release, feels like an instant classic. Perhaps you lot saw information technology for the outset fourth dimension in middle or high school at the stop of the year, when you were itching to leave the classroom for summer intermission. If that’s the case, it’s well worth a rewatch. And, if you’ve never seen
Stand and Evangelize, queue upwardly your Benchmark Channel subscription now.
Based on the story of high school math instructor Jaime Escalante, the film is fix in Eastward Los Angeles, at a schoolhouse with a mostly working-class Latine educatee population. At first, Escalante (Edward James Olmos) tries to connect with his students through sense of humor — but some of the students, including Angel Guzman (Lou Diamond Phillips) continually question Escalante’s potency.
To make matters worse, the schoolhouse’s accreditation is at risk due to low examination scores. Eager to help his students attain their potential, Escalante attempts to connect with them on a personal level. Nosotros won’t spoil the catastrophe, but nosotros will say that the real-life Escalante said the movie was “90% truth, 10% drama” — the perfect recipe for success. Non to mention, Olmos received an Oscar nomination for his performance.
Miracle: Messages to the President
Based on the true story of a family that lived in a roadless, remote area in Southward Korea’southward North Gyeongsang Province,
Miracle: Letters to the President
is a compelling family unit drama. It centers on Tae-yoon (Lee Sung-min), an engineer who dreams of building a railroad train station for the village his family calls home.
Tae-yoon’due south son, Joon-gyeong (Park Jeong-min), decides to take matters into his own easily. The young math prodigy enlists the help of his girlfriend, Ra-hee (Im Yoon-ah); his sister, Bo-gyeong (Lee Soo-kyung); and other villagers to establish a privately owned and operated railroad train station. Filled with a genuine warmth and humour,
is bolstered by a strong ensemble bandage, making it ane of 2021’south unsung cinematic delights.
A Brief History of Time
While y’all might have watched 2014’s
Theory of Everything
during Oscar season a few years ago, nosotros strongly recommend watching
A Brief History of Fourth dimension
instead. Although it takes its title from Stephen Hawking’southward renowned book, this documentary doesn’t purely delve into the nature of cosmology.
Instead, it offers a biography of the esteemed astrophysicist and cosmologist. Featuring intimate interviews with Hawking’s family, former classmates and colleagues, the documentary feels balanced — part portrait, part science lesson. And director Errol Morris makes slap-up use of visual effects to depict Hawking’s circuitous theoretical physics and meditations on cosmology.
The Imitation Game
Nominated for several Oscars and BAFTAs dorsum when information technology striking screens,
The Faux Game
is based on the 1983 biography
Alan Turing: The Enigma, which was penned by Andrew Hodges. The film, however, takes its title from the name of the game the esteemed cryptanalyst suggested when it came to answering a rather loaded question: can machines
Not familiar with Turing’s story? During Globe War 2, he decrypted German intelligence for the British by designing a machine that can decode words he already knows to be nowadays in certain letters. Despite laying the groundwork for the modernistic estimator, Turing was subjected to immense cruelty when government officials learned he was gay. In 2013, Queen Elizabeth II granted Turing a Majestic Pardon for his contributions — a newsworthy turn that, hopefully, brought more than visibility to all facets of his story.
Proficient Volition Hunting
In this Oscar-winning film, Robin Williams plays a therapist who’due south assigned to work with an incredibly smart boyfriend, Will Hunting (Matt Damon). Will works equally a janitor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); one twenty-four hour period, he anonymously solves a challenge a math professor wrote out on their chalkboard.
The professor eventually catches Volition solving another math challenge. But earlier Will tin can act on reaching his total potential in mathematics, he assaults a cop, and, as part of his persecution agreement, sees a therapist (Williams).
The motion picture was actually a last assignment for a playwriting form Damon was taking at Harvard University. He was supposed to turn in a comedy play, but ended up submitting a 40-page script instead. In the stop, Williams earned an Oscar for All-time Supporting Actor — and Damon and his longtime buddy, Ben Affleck, nabbed an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay.
Looking for a math-axial film that’southward less biographical and/or uplifting and a scrap more neo-noir psychological horror? Try
Pi, Darren Aronofsky’s feature-length directorial debut. Before
Requiem for a Dream
(2010), Aronofsky wrote nearly a paranoid mathematician, Max Cohen (Sean Gullette).
The unemployed number theorist believes he can unlock the universal patterns we come across in nature with a key number, and then he builds an advanced computer organization — and falls into a rabbit pigsty of deep questions most the universe, hallucinations, paranoid delusions and headaches that give the protagonist of
(1977) a run for his money.
has it all. There’s mysticism, in that location’due south obsession — there’due south the fundamental clash of human irrationality and the regularity of mathematics that compose our earth. If you desire something a flake mind-bending or theory-inducing, Arronfsky’southward classic is what
The Number 23
(2007) dreamed of being — but with more black-and-white arthouse style.