Radioactive: Movie Review

Did the film live up to Marie Curie's legacy?
Film Director: Marjane Satrapi
Cast: Rosamund Pike, Sam Riley

Radioactive is a film about Marie Sklodowska Curie, directed by the Iranian- born  French film director Marjane Satrapi. Rosamund Pike plays the famous scientist and does a wonderful job presenting the long-winded journey to the discovery of radiation and polonium. What really struck me about this film though was the fact that the director decided to focus just as much attention on Marie Curie’s personal life as she did on her work life, which really brings out all the struggles she had to go through. I never knew about the sheer amount of sexist and racial struggle and discrimination Mme Curie had to face simply because she was from Poland, as many people started to degrade her discovery.  People would gather outside her house, shouting racist and offensive things whilst she would be trying to sleep. Another very interesting aspect of the film was the fact that the director decided to continuously shift to different points in time, where Mme Curie’s discovery produced a mass disaster (eg. Atomic bombs and Chernobyl) or positively benefited society (eg. in the formulation of X-rays.) It massively helped to put things into perspective, not only from a historical timeline point of view, but to highlight all the ways her discovery was being used and manipulated over the world.

Overall, I learned an unbelievable amount from this film, both about Curie and the massive consequences and backlash she had to face from her discovery. I would recommend this film to any science-keen moviegoer over the age of 12. I hope all of you will be just as fascinated by this film as I am!

Francesca UIV