Horizon: Season 23, Episode 16

The Race for the Double Helix (14 Sep. 1987)
"Life Story" (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Documentary | History
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 621 users  
Reviews: 27 user

Watson and Crick race to find the structure of DNA before Linus Pauling, Maurice Wilkins, or Rosalind Franklin can find the key to unlocking the secret.

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Title: The Race for the Double Helix (14 Sep 1987)

The Race for the Double Helix (14 Sep 1987) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Jim Watson
...
Francis Crick
...
Maurice Wilkins
...
Rosalind Franklin
Betsy Brantley ...
Elizabeth Watson
John Moreno ...
Vittorio Luzzati
Daniel André Pageon ...
First Colleague
Yves Aubert ...
Second Colleague
Anthony Benson ...
J.T. Randall
Clive Panto ...
Max Perutz
Rupert Massey ...
John Kendrew
Geoffrey Chater ...
Sir Lawrence Bragg
Nicholas Fry ...
Raymond Gosling
Tom McCabe ...
Bill Seeds
Petronella Ford ...
Odile Crick
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Storyline

Watson and Crick race to find the structure of DNA before Linus Pauling, Maurice Wilkins, or Rosalind Franklin can find the key to unlocking the secret. Written by Kathy Li

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Details

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Release Date:

14 September 1987 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeff Goldblum, who portrays James D. Watson, later narrated the 5-episode documentary series "D.N.A.,"(2003), the first episode of which, "The Secret of Life," retold the same events portrayed in this film, following James D. Watson to original locations at Cambridge and King's College, and also featuring some of the original figures, such as Maurice Wilkins, Erwin Chargaff, Raymond Gosling, and Peter Pauling. See more »

Quotes

Jim Watson: This is off the map, someone has to guess right. Chapter one, page one: Once upon a time life reproduced life - the secret of creation, worth the Nobel Prize.
See more »

Soundtracks

Come On-a My House
Written by Ross Bagdasarian and William Saroyan
Performed by Rosemary Clooney
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User Reviews

 
Beautiful
7 January 2007 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

What a difficult story to tell, but what a beautifully executed result. I loved the performances from all of the actors. Goldblum and Piggot-Smith are splendidly accessible, and Alan Howard is mesmerising and painful as the tormented Wilkins. I'm not a great scientist or fan of "accurate" history pieces, but I thought this was a fabulous piece of drama, and an invaluable one. More dramatic and dynamic than BRAVEHEART and more moving than TITANIC. A triumph! This film is strangely and hypnotically beguiling, interweaving the plots of scientists with all their flawed characteristics while describing the race to define the DNA structure with aplomb. And even more of an achievement considering the potentially dull details of the story.


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