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Movie Maths Clips
by Burkard Polster and Marty Ross
This page complements our list of movies featuring mathematics. Our plan is to add a new clip every week. (The clips often relate to our Maths Masters column, in which case we also provide a link to the relevant column). Also, if you enjoy such clips, check out the wonderful collection being compiled by Oliver Knill.
Moonlighting: 2.13 (1986) IMDB. Bruce engages in a little maths humour.
Flash Gordon (1980) IMDB. You never when you'll need a prime number.
Cube 2 (2002) IMDB. A crazy mathematician helps explain a crazy structure.
The Daily Show: 19.15 (2013) IMDB. Diane Ravitch, with some naive ideas about education as a public good.
Kelly's Heroes (1970) IMDB. Some wishful contraband thinking.
Diabolique (1996) IMDB. Tough class!
Strangers on a Train (1951) IMDB. Some strangers are stranger than others.
Stand and Deliver (1988) IMDB. Fun with finger maths (and our column).
Thunderbirds: Sun Probe (1965) IMDB. Technology helps with a maths problem.
The School of Rock (2003) IMDB. An interesting way to teach (a little) maths.
I Went Down (1997) IMDB. A great way to get people to listen to your maths lecture.
Star Trek: Court Martial (1967) IMDB. Captain Kirk boosts the computers.
The Professor and His Beloved Equation (2006) IMDB. Another friendly clip from this great movie.
Beautiful Ohio (2006) IMDB. The fun of maths competitions, and proud parents.
The Adventures of Robin Hood: The Genius (1958) IMDB. Who says projectile motion can't be fun?
Dance Squared (1961) IMDB. Some very active squares.
Bloodhounds of Broadway (1952) IMDB. Even mobsters have to relax.
Infinity (1996) IMDB. Richard Feynman impresses a girl.
Family Guy: When You Wish Upon a Weinstein (2003) IMDB. Yeah, maths is really important.
21 Grams (2003) IMDB. Some flowery philosophy with lunch.
Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium (2007) IMDB. Not your normal job application.
Moebius (1996) IMDB. And we thought Melbourne's public transport had problems!
Battlefield Earth (2000) IMDB. One geometric step at a time.
The Mirror Has Two Faces (1994) IMDB. Romantic twins.
Stand-In (1937) IMDB. An accountant with a difference.
The Life of Pi (2012) IMDB. An unfortunate name and an impressive solution.
Twilight (2008) IMDB. The best scene from the worst ever vampire movie.
The Colbert Report: 8.112 (2012) IMDB. Boy bands praise all those who don't praise themselves.
Insignificance (1985) IMDB. Cosmology is such a turn on!
The Professor and His Beloved Equation (2006) IMDB. A beautiful movie, based on the beautiful Yoko Ogawa novel.
The Ice Storm (1997) IMDB. A very insightful kid.
Donald in Mathmagic Land (1959) IMDB. A strange creature has a strange notion of π.
Criminal Minds: Masterpiece (2008) IMDB. Kidnapping, with an elegant golden ratio touch.
Omar Khayyam (1957) IMDB. A great mathematician, Hollywood style.
The Simpsons: Bart Gets a Z (1988) IMDB. Bart and Milhouse get a lesson in times tables.
My Stepmother is an Alien (1988) IMDB. An alien explains her alien ways.
Jason X (2001). A cute way to fix the odds.
Infinity (2012). A cool short film by VCE student Elizabeth Duong.
That Mitchell and Webb Look: 2.1 (2008) IMDB. A movie we'd like to see.
That Mitchell and Webb Look: 2.6 (2008) IMDB. The history of the greatest game show of all time.
The Daily Show: 18.21 (2012) IMDB. Jon Stewart and Nate Silver engage in a little post-election gloating.
The Colbert Report: 8.120 (2012) IMDB. Stephen Colbert ponders Republican maths (and our column).
Breaking the Code (1996) IMDB. The Enigma machine, and the way to beat it (and our column).
Marius (1953) IMDB. The strange mathematics of mixing drinks (and our column).
The Abbott and Costello Show: 1.19 (1953) IMDB. In Australian education, everyone gets the third banana.
That Mitchell and Webb Look: 1.1 (2006) IMDB. The greatest game show of all time?
Paint Your Wagon (1969) IMDB. A clip indicative of the fine work your Maths Masters do with children (at least according to Senator X) (and our column).
The Daily Show: 17.149 (2012) IMDB. Bill Clinton gives the Republicans a maths lesson.
S4 (2008) IMDB. We like irrationals too, but not that much.
Doctor Who 2005: 42 (2007) IMDB. You never know when you'll need some recreational mathematics.
The Colbert Report: 2.108 (2006) IMDB. Stephen Colbert investigates the world of donuts (and our column).
Blackadder II: Head (1986) IMDB. A slow learner.
The Gambler (1974) IMDB. The mathematics of belief.
The Colbert Report: 8.69 (2012) IMDB. More intellectual brilliance of the Republican Party.
The Colbert Report: 8.86 (2012) IMDB. The intellectual brilliance of the Republican Party.
Threshold: Trees Made of Glass, Part 2 (2005) IMDB. We're not fans of group therapy either.
Threshold: Outbreak (2005) IMDB. Another way to investigate probability.
This is Spinal Tap (1989) IMDB. VTAC logic (and our column).
Fermat's Last Tango (1989) IMDB. The press at work (and our column).
That's Adequate (1989) IMDB. The true story of the discovery of relativity.
The Saragossa Manuscript (1965) IMDB. A pretty girl and poetic mathematics (and our column).
Stand and Deliver (1988) IMDB. Integration by ganas.
The Wonder Years: Math Class (1989) IMDB. Mr. Collins, a great maths character.
Touch: Pilot (2012) IMDB. So that's how to win the lottery (and our column).
Family Guy: Mr. Griffin Goes to Washington (2001) IMDB. A senator employs a really big number (and our column).
Forbidden Planet (1956) IMDB. Alien exponentials (and our column).
Torchy Gets Her Man (1938) IMDB. We cannot confirm that this is a technique taught in Maths Methods, but we can't rule it out either (and our column).
The brilliant Steve Martin is interviewed by the brilliant Bob Osserman (and our column). The DVD can be purchased here.
Carry on Teacher (1959) IMDB. Teachers can be so clever (and our column).
The Wizard of Oz (1939) IMDB. Australian higher education in a nutshell (and our column).
Waterboys (2001) IMDB. Some applied geometry.
Stand and Deliver (1988) IMDB. Jaime Escalante fills the hole (and our column).
Get Smart: The Decoy (1966) IMDB. Max recites his times tables (and our column).
Pleasantville (1998) IMDB. A very strange world, with some even stranger director's commentary. (And, our column).
The Mirror Has Two Faces (1994) IMDB. A gift for the mathematician who has everything.
The Mirror Has Two Faces (1994) IMDB. Tough standards for a mathematician's date.
A Pure Formality (1994) IMDB. Gérard Depardieu and Roman Polanksi play geometric mind games.
Mean Girls (2004) IMDB. The glamorous world of maths competitions.
Hotel Hilbert (1996) IMDB. David Hilbert would be proud.
Suspect X (Yôgisha X No Kenshin) (2008) IMDB. How to occupy yourself in prison.
Futurama: A Fishful of Dollars (1999) IMDB. The perils of cheating.
Three O'Clock High (1987) IMDB. The perils of cheating.
Ball of Fire (1941) IMDB. Barbara Stanwyck makes one hell of an apple.
Quality Street (1937) IMDB. It's important to check with real herrings.
The Road to Hong Kong (1962) IMDB. There is Hope for us yet.
The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes (1969) IMDB. Advanced calculus indeed.
Salem's Lot (1979) IMDB. The peculiar geometry of vampire creation.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) IMDB (and our column). The logic of witch-hunting.
My Little Chickadee (1940) IMDB. W. C. Fields adjusts the mathematics of poker.
Pythagoras and the 30 Virgins (1977) IMDB (and our column). Karel Gott sings that old favourite, Thank-you Mr. Pythagoras.
Merry Andrew (1958) IMDB (and our column). The musical approach to remembering a famous theorem.
The 4th Dimension (2006) IMDB (and our column). A precocious (but not quite correct) boy has fun with his teacher.
Futures: Math, Who Needs It? (1991) IMDB. Paula Poundstone sums up school mathematics.
I.Q. (1994) IMDB. Romantic Zeno.
The Music of Chance (1993) IMDB. You see, numbers have souls.
The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) IMDB. A meddling alien.
Evil Roy Slade (1972) IMDB. Outlaw arithmetic.
The Daily Show (2011) . Fair and balanced, and really, really dumb.
Wonder Woman: The Pluto File (1976) IMDB. Getting help with your homework.
The Siege of Syracuse (1960) IMDB. What really happened with those mirrors.
Succubus (1968) IMDB. Yes, she's beautiful, but keep your eyes on the piano!
21 (2008) IMDB. Hollywood doing a reasonable job with Monty Hall.
Teen Patti (2010) IMDB. Bollywood doing an awful job with Monty Hall.
The Arrival (1996) IMDB. Hollywood checks things "as best they could".
Julie Johnson (2001) IMDB. Mischa Barton vs the Cantor set.
The Hudsucker Proxy (1994) IMDB. A big idea − you know, for kids.
Freaky Friday (2003) IMDB. The fun of maths tests.
The Rules of Attraction (2002) IMDB. How to practice very safe sex.
Oh God! Book II (1980) IMDB. A God with better math sense than George Pell.
Six Feet Under: Brotherhood (2001) IMDB. A teacher, and her loving student.
St. Trinians (2007) IMDB. Oh dear, a queer sphere.
In July (2000) IMDB. Mathematics to the rescue.
Bingo (1991) IMDB. A very smart dog.
She Wrote the Book (1946) IMDB. A movie that raises the age old question: Do you like bridges?
Cabiria (1914) IMDB. A "wise old man" constructs a circle or parabola, or something.
Are You With It? (1948) IMDB. Donald O'Connor as an actuary, giving a remarkable lesson in applied mathematics.
Shrieker (1998) IMDB. How to fight a 4-dimensional monster? Study "multidimensional topography".
Brain Dead (1990) IMDB. Numbers are fine, but equations ...
The Giant Claw (1957) IMDB. A romantic prelude, and then tracking a monster from outer space.
Breaking the Code (1996) IMDB. Alan Turing and his friend ponder a pinecone.
La Moutarde Me Monte Au Nez (1974) IMDB. It is important to put some energy into your teaching.
Lambada (1990) IMDB. A cool teacher demonstrates the power of the Rectangular Coordinate System.
Bullshot (1983) IMDB. The British are just so good at things.
Bullshot (1983) IMDB. An alternative method of reciting a formula.
The Favor (1994) IMDB. Some bluesy fractals.
The Favor (1994) IMDB. Never try to seduce a working mathematician.
Little Big League (1994) IMDB. Billy gets some help with his homework from the Minnesota Twins baseball team.
Christmas Vacation (1989) IMDB. Clark Griswold sums up the effect of his many christmas lights.
The Santa Claus 3 (2006) IMDB. A Little reindeer arithmetic.
Attack Girls' Swim Team vs the Unliving Dead (2007) IMDB. Word problems can have a dramatic effect on people.
Idiocracy (2006) IMDB. One of the deeper problems from Australia's National Curriculum.
Bedazzled (2000) IMDB. Elizabeth Hurley, as the Devil, demonstrating the National Curriculum approach to pure mathematics.
Better Off Dead (1985) IMDB. A clip demonstrating how our students truly perceive us.
Batman (1966) IMDB. Commissioner Gordon contemplates a very evil rectangle.
Team America: World Police (2004) IMDB. A very funny running joke, beginning with a terrorist plot that will be "Nine eleven times a hundred".
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