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The most turbulent years in the life of a genius woman: between 1905, when Marie CURIE comes with Pierre CURIE to Stockholm to be awarded the Nobel Prize for the discovery of radioactivity, and 1911, when she receives her second Nobel Prize, after challenging France’s male-dominated academic establishment both as a scientist and a woman.
Marie CURIE was a pioneering scientist in many aspects. The first female Nobel Prize winner, and the first two-time award winner (one in Chemistry and the other in Physics), the discoverer of radiant elements, and the first professor in the University of Paris. The early 20th century was, however, an age of hardship even to this remarkably genius woman. CURIE, as a polish and a woman, was cut off from the male-controlling French science scene and obstructed by male scientists’ hostility and condescension. Based on the real journal written by CURIE herself, this film shows a rather off-track biography of Marie CURIE which otherwise would be focusing on her scientific achievements, or accomplishments. The film starts with the death of Pierre, Marie’s co-researcher and co-winner of Nobel Prize, the father of her children, and the perfect partner. And the film shows Marie in two well-balanced ways, as a stern and decisive workaholic, and a lonely woman who needs to keep her private and public world intact on her own. The inner vulnerability is overcome through her burning passion toward science and through her upright will to choose her own life regardless of social prejudice. Though her romance with her married co-worker puts her second Nobel Prize in jeopardy, she does not give up both. Instead, she carries a strike on androcentrism. Her refutation is that there would not be many male researchers left if male Nobel Prize winners are deprived of the prize on the base of their experience of extra-marital relationships. The film portrays Marie’s private and public area while keeping it in balance with spaces filled with soft-focused and bright lights, sort of split screens expressed with the frame of door, rhythmical montages moving back and forth between inner and outer space, and outstanding performance of a Polish actress, Karolina GRUSZKA. (CHO HyeYoung)
Marie NOËLLEMarie NOËLLE
Born in France, Marie NOËLLE works since 1982 as an author, screenplay writer and filmmaker. In 1979 she starts her collaboration with Peter SEHR: she edits, co-writes or co-directs various of his films including A Group of People, Obsession, Love the Hard Way, etc. In 1995 she writes and directs her first feature I tell myself a man which is nominated for the Max Ophüls Preis, followed other documentaries since then. At 2012, Ludwig II was released in the German cinemas. This feature was co-directed with Peter SEHR and based on a script that she co-wrote with him after intensive historical research.