Einstein and the Bomb (2024)

Einstein and the Bomb (2024)

A dramatized depiction of Einstein’s own words against Nazism

6.0

Movie

United Kingdom
English
Documentary, Drama
2024
ANTHONY PHILIPSON
Adolf Hitler, Aidan McArdle, Albert Einstein
77 min

TLDR

I wouldn’t say it’s a companion piece to Oppenheimer, because after watching both, you can’t help but compare the two– and Einstein and the Bomb would never match up.

What it's about

Albert Einstein flees Nazi Germany and reckons with his newfound fame, speaking out against fascism, and the legacy of his brilliant theories, as revealed through archival footage and the dramatization of his own words.

The take

With the rise of fascism globally, and concerns about an upcoming world war, depictions of World War II have become popular, with the most notable being Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer. Einstein and the Bomb instead takes a look at the prominent scientist, whose theory of relativity made the atomic bomb possible, who had a personal stake in ensuring the Nazis were defeated, but who also had to reckon with the horrific consequences in pursuing the West’s promises of peace. It’s a needed perspective, and director Anthony Philipson pulls from Einstein’s very words, his own ideas about the society at the time eerily echoing the concerns about today’s society. However, there’s something off about the way these ideas are presented, as it feels like the film was less interested in Einstein as a man, and more interested in using him as a spokesperson, using his image to cry over today’s conflicts.

What stands out

The source material is pretty interesting, but after the release of Oppenheimer, Einstein and the Bomb’s approach feels like fanfiction, with Einstein as a new point of view, which is crazy, because the archival footage was real and the dialogue is pulled directly from Einstein’s own words.

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