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The Big Bang on the big screen

By Michael Banks

If you are in the US and stuck for things to do this weekend, then you might well think about catching the noir film The Big Bang, which is released today.

Starring Antonio Banderas, who plays private detective Ned Cruz, and directed by Tony Krantz, the film features Cruz searching for a missing stripper named Lexie Permisson (played by Sienna Guillory) while contending with unsavoury Russian boxers and brash police detectives.

And the physics connection? Well apart from a café in the film called Planck’s Constant Café, the movie’s resident madman is Sam Elliott, played by Simon Kestral, who, with the help of a particle physicist, has built a proton collider under the New Mexico desert to search for the Higgs boson. The film then sees Cruz heading to the underground “military base” to find Permisson.

From the trailer the physics in the movie seems to be fairly accurate. “In 27 hours I am going to find something that theoretically should exist but no-one has ever seen,” says Kestral. “Funny,” replies Cruz. “That is exactly what I am looking for.”

Before heading off to the nearest cinema, however, you might want to read this less than favourable review of the film in the New York Times, which calls the movie a “jumble of notions tossed into a hat”, with the picture being a “low point for Mr Banderas”.

Well, at least it contains some accurate physics, which probably makes for a change.

N.B. The film is rated R (“under 17, requires accompanying parent or adult guardian”) so take note when watching the above trailer.

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