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What the #$*! Do We (K)now!? (2004)
Pseudo-Science wrapped in Smug New-Age Thought *some spoilers*
The basic root of this films tries to connect spirituality with science. The more accurate description would be connecting New Age thought with science fiction.
The production values and banal cast of supporting characters of the "story" (starring the deaf girl from Seinfeld) have the essence of corporate training film strips. Though somewhat well acted she plays a one-dimensional jilted photographer who can see "quantum" truths (CGI) sprinkled throughout her day.
Interspersed between the story are mumbo jumbo and trite observations on self, the universe and being. The parade of scientists contain nuggets of truth about physics with heavy unverifiable conjecture. They absolute most laughable was a Zsa Zsa Gabor like "mystic" who quaintly proclaimed we are all "god" and "gods" somehow. I guarantee you with all the heavy credentials the other scientists had there are about 20 of their colleagues who think they have gone off the deep end.
Eventually the main character finds enlightenment. How do we know? She writes all over herself in a bathtub. She stares wide eyed in the sky. She has a peaceful look on her face. She smiles and I guess accepts herself. She throws away her medication. Call me ignorant but I'm not about to stop using a pharmacy and replacing it with "positive" thinking. How this relates to quantum physics still baffles me. The question asked several times, unabashedly stolen from the Matrix is "How Deep Does the Rabbit Hole Go"? I cringed everytime it was asked.
Am I supposed to be wow-ed by constant computer generated pictures of atoms and neurons accompanied by echoey voice overs of a conversation a heard a few minutes ago?
Am I supposed to be humbled by circumstantial statements (not backed up with ANY credible evidence or equations ) spewed out in 2 minutes sound bytes by casually dressed scientists?
Of course no film like this would be complete without unwarranted cheap shots at Christianity. A synopsis: - There is no right and wrong, only what we create as right and wrong.
- Traditional Religion has created ignorance and suffering. - Don't you see quantum physics proves we are all God!
I half expected a yoga class after this. As I got up, I heard someone around me proclaim "I felt the Christ-Energy flowing from the screen!"
To the movie's credit it presents the material with a sense of wonder and raises some intriguing questions about perspective, the (already well established) power of positive thinking, and fairly concise representations of physiology and basic atomic structure.
But to call this a science movie is a slap in the face of science itself. This is clearly a New Age film with some scientific trappings. Reviews from the media (usually not technically and research trained) have raved over this mostly because of their own ignorance of the topic. What the #$*! do I know? A little more than this movie.