I went to see the film The Martian yesterday. I think it is the best film I’ve seen as a film about science. It actually is about science: the hero is a botanist who saves himself not with guns but with botanical knowledge, and he escapes Mars by means of a piece of mathematical reasoning (plus some technology). My only misgiving about the film was the overly frequent use of the word “shit”: not because Watney uses his own to grow potatoes on Mars, but because the word is clearly intended to make the science audience-friendly. This was not necessary and detracts from the ethos of the film. It is perfectly possible to be a “cool dude”, if that’s what you want to be, and not say “shit” all the time. Anyway, the science glowed like the sun on Mars’s horizon.
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