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What the #$*! Do We (K)now!? (2004)

Not Rated | | Documentary, Comedy, Drama | 22 October 2004 (USA)
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A fictional photographer's quest to spiritually rediscover herself is interspersed with documentary footage of scientists and theologians discussing the philosophical aspects of quantum physics.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Marlee Matlin ... Lead
Elaine Hendrix ... Jennifer
John Ross Bowie ... Elliot
Robert Bailey Jr. ... Reggie
Barry Newman ... Frank
Larry Brandenburg ... Bruno
Daniela Serra Daniela Serra ... Bride
James Langston Drake James Langston Drake ... Groom (as Jame Drake)
Michele Mariana Michele Mariana ... Tour Guide (as Michelle Mariana)
Armin Shimerman ... Older Man (in subway)
Robert Blanche ... Bob
Pavel Mikoloski Pavel Mikoloski ... Priest
Alex Rogers Alex Rogers ... Guy #1
Tin Tran Tin Tran ... Guy #2
Leslie Taylor ... Bridesmaid
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Storyline

"WHAT THE #$*! DO WE KNOW?!" is a radical departure from convention. It demands a freedom of view and greatness of thought so far unknown, indeed, not even dreamed of since Copernicus. It's a documentary. It's a story. It's mind-blowing special effects. This film plunges you into a world where quantum uncertainty is demonstrated - where neurological processes, and perceptual shifts are engaged and lived by its protagonist - where everything is alive, and reality is changed by every thought. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

it's time to get wise See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Spanish

Release Date:

22 October 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sacred Science See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,656, 8 February 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$10,941,801, 10 April 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Depiction of quantum mechanics in the movie bears no resemblance to the real theory of that name. In particular, the common misconception that the "observer effect" is dependent upon a sapient, human observer is incorrect. If any object interacts with any other, and either requires information regarding the current state and properties of the other, then that constitutes an observation. See more »

Quotes

Fred Alan Wolf: First of all, lets talk about the sub atomic world, and then we'll talk about what is science about reality.
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Crazy Credits

The Scientists, Mystics and Scholars interviews herein were chosen based on the expertise in the subjects which they discussed. They do not necessarily agree with all viewpoints put forth in the film. Likewise the Filmmakers may not agree with all the viewpoints put forth by the Interviewees. Agreement is not necessary - thinking for one's self is. See more »

Connections

References Chasing Destiny (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Mighty Micro People
Written and Performed by Amon Tobin
Just Isn't Music
Courtesy of Ninja Tune
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User Reviews

 
Unenlightening and Highly Flawed Film that Attempts to Connect Quantum Physics to "Spirituality"
26 March 2004 | by brandonrericksonSee all my reviews

I had numerous problems with this film.

It contains some basic factual information concerning quantum mechanics, which is fine. Although quantum physics has been around for over 50 years, the film presents this information in a grandiose way that seems to be saying: "Aren't you just blown away by this!" Well, not really. These aren't earth shattering revelations anymore. At any rate, I was already familiar with quantum theory, and the fact that particles have to be described by wave equations, etc. is not new.

The main problem I have with this movie, however, is the way these people use quantum theory as a way of providing a scientific basis for mysticism and spiritualism. I don't have any serious problem with mysticism and spiritualism, but quantum mechanics doesn't really have anything to do with these things, and it should be kept separate. The people they interviewed for this movie start with the ideas of quantum theory and then make the leap to say that simply by thinking about something you can alter the matter around you, hence we should think positively so as to have a positive impact on the world and make our lives better. The reasoning is completely ridiculous, and the conclusions do not logically follow from quantum theory. For every so called "expert" that they interviewed for this film, there are scores of theoretically physicists who would completely disagree. They would point out, quite rightly, that the unpredictability of the subatomic world does not lend support to mystical notions about our spiritual connectedness.

It disturbs me that people are going to see this film and completely eat it up because it leaves them with a nice positive feeling. The main thrust of the film is based on a total misinterpretation of quantum theory, and it is as bad in its reasoning as any attempt to justify organized religion with similar pseudo-scientific arguments.

Avoid this film.

Oh yeah. At one point, one of the "experts" says that since throughout history most of the assumptions people have made about the world turned out to be false, therefore the assumptions we currently hold about the world are also likely to be false. Huh? That totally does not follow. And even if it did, I don't see how that helps his argument. I mean, if his ideas ever became common assumptions then I guess we would have to assume that they are false too, based on his own reasoning.


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