How Long Is A Piece Of String?

Alan Davies attempts to answer the proverbial question: how long is a piece of string? But what appears to be a simple task soon turns into a mind-bending voyage of discovery where nothing is as it seems.

An encounter with leading mathematician Marcus du Sautoy reveals that Alan’s short length of string may in fact be infinitely long. When Alan attempts to measure his string at the atomic scale, events take an even stranger turn. Not only do objects appear in many places at once, but reality itself seems to be an illusion.

Ultimately, Alan finds that measuring his piece of string could – in theory at least – create a black hole, bringing about the end of the world.

Jack’s opinion: I think the movie was great,even though it barely made any sense. The movie made me think so much my brain hurt. When I was watching the movie something was pounding in my brain screaming, “how could this be!”   Some things seemed to make sense but then didn’t make sense at all!   Like the particles of light being shot through two slits.  How could one particle be two places at the same time?  The people who were explaining it sounded like they didn’t really understand it either.  I would like to learn more about quantum mechanics.  I rate this movie 5 stars.

Ava’s Opinion: I liked the movie because it made my mind turn and see the world in a different way.  It was not just about a piece of string it was about anything you could ever think of!  At first I had no idea why anyone would want to make a movie about a piece of string.  I liked it because it was full of science  and math,which I like.  My favorite part was when they talked about using lightwaves so close together that it would collapse and make a black hole.  I would give it 41/2 stars.

Payton’s Opinion:  How long is a Piece of String? This movie really confused and entertained me at the same time!  It really makes you think, maybe even a little bit too much. My head just kept spinning round and round, but even when I didn’t understand what they were talking about, it was very interesting.  I was disturbed and amazed when they spoke of the idea of something being both dead and alive at the very same time.  All in all I thought this movie was very thought provoking.  I would rate it 5 stars.”

Vanessa’s opinion: What seems like a very simple question turns into a philosophical journey for Alan Davies and his audience.  I appreciated the simple speech and the visual aids in this mind-bending film.  More than a film about math or physics, this is a film about perspective.  Something as unimportant as a remnant bit of string can hold within it a whole world of mysteries, if we are willing to stop and look and ask and listen.  I cannot claim to have wrapped my head completely around the claims made by quantum mechanics but I think the Buddha knew something of it: “…all things have no fixed identity and are in a state of impermanence – change and flux – constantly becoming and decaying. Not only are all things constantly changing, but if we analyze any phenomenon in enough detail we come to the conclusion that it is ultimately unfindable, and exists purely by definitions in terms of other things – and one of those other things is always the mind which generates those definitions…’   If you don’t have time to watch the documentary definitely check out this short video on the famous double slit experiment : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfPeprQ7oGc   I give the film 2.5 stars

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