Halfway to Radioactive, streaming on Amazon Prime now something strange is happening. What appears to be a biopic in numbers splits in two, its narrative deranged by a twist of fate. the story breaks. the end that seemed inevitable can no longer come. for a while, it looks like the movie is about to escape its formula and become something entirely new.
Unfortunately, that doesn't really do it. Marjane Satrapi ' s Marie Curie 's biography is the portrait of a woman who has crossed scientific s.ues and social, but it never frees itself from restrictions of its kind.
Find out more Subscribe to the Now newsletter for our editors' picks on the most important stories of the day.
Marie Curie discovered polonium and radium. It has transformed our understanding of science and the world around us. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize - twice, in fact, and in two different disciplines. His study of radiation led to medical breakthroughs and ushered in the atomic age. But in Radioactive, it all sets back the fact that one day she met a nice man and married him.
Written by Jack Thorne and based on Lauren Redniss' award-winning graphic novel, Radioactive charts a predictable route through Curie's life and work. He ticks off all the inspiring biographical boxes of the process: lingering shots of glowing beakers and Bunsen burners,sexist villains with straight laces to defeat and lots of eerie coughing in handkerchiefs. But there is something bigger and darker bubbling just below the surface.
Find out more: 15 Best Amazon Prime Video Movies To Watch
Rosamund Pike and Sam Riley as Marie and Pierre Curie. Studio Canal
Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl, Jack Reacher) is fragile and convincing as a thorny but brilliant scientist. Born Maria Skłodowska,Marie is a Polish immigrant determined to continue her scientific research in Paris. She's against nationalistic sentiments and a male-dominated establishment - at one point she wonders out loud if she is being abused because of her nationality or gender. When alienated from academia, help takes the form of future husband Pierre Curie ( Sam Riley , Maleficent : Mistress of Evil ), who offers her lab space and becomes her scientific collaborator.
It should perhaps come as no surprise that the film begins and ends with the Curies relationship. The graphic novel is titled Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie, A Tale of Love and Fallout. And although the film removes Pierre's name from the title, it lavishes on him.ue always a frankly undeserved attention. Riley's performance is sympathetic enough, but Peter's character feels subscribed.
It's not as if there isn't a lot of potential for conflict and spark between the Curies. Marie is reluctant to share the credit with her husband in a world that wants to sweep her away. Pierre is an unconventional scientist by today's standards, fascinated by spiritualism and fond of running naked in the fields. But despite their quirks, it's hard to tell what they see in each other. For all the time they spend together in the labs, there is surprisingly little chemistry.
Pike 's most gripping scenes do not involve her husband at all. She is at her best when banging her head with her stubborn daughter, played by Anya Taylor-Joy (star of The Witch, Split and Emma ). Irène Curie inherited her mother's sharp tongue, her passion for science and her pure and stubborn determination. While Pierre offers Marie essential support, it is Irene who pushes her to overcome her greatest fears.
It wouldn't be fair to say that there is nothing interesting about Marie Curie's personal life. It was so outrageous, in fact, that it overshadowed his work. But this drama plays out too predictably in Radioactive, from the indignant headlines to the provocative appearance of Curie in front of a room filled with jubilant women.
When does it get interesting? The clue is in the name.
Radioactive is a horror film disguised as a biopic. The fatal side effects of working with radiation will never be seen.only noticeable when it is too late. As Curie's accomplishments grow, we see a glimpse into the future his research helped build: Medical brea Crossings go hand in hand with twentieth-century nightmares of Hiroshima and Chernobyl. A sequence defined in the nuclear test site at Doom Town, Nevada , sharply contrasts the kitsch optimism of the 1950s with the destructive force of the bomb.
Please, Madam, put on gloves! Studio Canal
The film draws a parallel between Curie and Alfred Nobel , the Swedish chemist and " merchant of death "who patented gunpowder. Despite the human cost of its creation, it is now mostly known for founding the prizes that celebrate scientific progress. It is no coincidence that the first Nobel Prize winner from the Curies is juxtaposed with a scene where the Enola Gay drops the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Curie herself is not immune to the consequences of her work. Her discoveries bring her the recognition she yearns for, but her private life erupts into personal tragedy and scandal. And she is eventually forced to admit that the new Items she discovered make people sick. At her lowest point, she is not considered one of France's most prominent scientists. , she is "the dirty Pole who invented a poison that the world thought wonderful. "When she succumbs to an anemie aplastic after years of exposure to radioactive material, she is forced to face the cost of her living '
Director Satrapi is perhaps best known as the creator of the target Persepolis , an autobiographical comic book series and an animated film about his education in Iran. But despite Radioactive's source material and Satrapi's background in visual art, it is an aesthetically disappointing experience. There are some striking images - a test dummy melting in a nuclear explosion, a luminous vial in Curie's dark room, the desolate dreamy landscape she explores in her final scenes - but they are scattered throughout a film that treats too cautiously his extraordinary subject.
Radioactive seems designed to sit alongside uplifting historical stories like The King's Speech and The Aeronauts (also ed by Thorne), but its dark currents make it a tough fit in the genre. There's no denying Marie Curie's accomplishments or her place in history, but her legacy is more complicated than Radioactive's love story.