December 28, 2020

Episode 8: Determined

Topic: Determined | Raw Science Film Festival 2020, FINALIST Best Feature Documentary Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science Guests: Director, Melissa Godoy | Producer, Therese Barry-Tanner | Key Subject, Gina Green-Harris | Key Subject, Karen McElwee Description: This podcast explores how a Black community in Milwaukee, led by Gina Green-Harris, is contributing to medical research in a safe, supportive, and innovative way. Karen, a research participant from this community and film protagonist in the film, is also featured in the podcast. Film: Three women at high risk for Alzheimer’s disease offer their brains and bodies to a medical study. After losing their mothers to the disease, these daughters are determined to contribute to the search for a cure. Meanwhile, they anxiously watch for signs of the disease in their own brains. This independent documentary, filmed over five years, intimately shows what happens when human test subjects – who are at high risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease – offer their blood, brains, and hearts to conquer it. At the heart of the Alzheimer’s study are the test group participants – middle-aged adults with a deceased or living parent with Alzheimer’s disease. Parental history makes the test group 2.5x more likely to get the disease than those without a history of it in their families. The human research subjects are followed by the scientists for a minimum of 15 to 20 years and undergo periodic and rigorous cognitive tests. The test group also shares one of life’s most difficult trials – a parent’s decline from Alzheimer’s disease. This is a story about the fight to stop Alzheimer’s disease as told by the people with the most on the line. | Length: 35 minutes

November 25, 2020

Episode 7: The High Frontier

Topic: The High Frontier | Raw Science Film Festival 2020, Official Selection Feature Documentary Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science Guests: Director, Ryan Stuit | Producer, Will Henry | Producer, Dylan Taylor Film Description: THE HIGH FRONTIER reveals the untold story of the life and influence of the late physicist and space colony pioneer Dr. Gerard K. O’Neill. In 1969, Dr. O’Neill released the book The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space, which sparked the enormous grassroots movement to “open the high frontier” with the goal of making space colonization available and beneficial for all mankind. The film is told through “Gerry’s Kids” as they affectionally call themselves; his peers, family, and the younger generation who followed that movement and are now leading the modern day space industry.| Length: 25 minutes

Topic: The Edge of All We Know | Raw Science Film Festival 2020, Winner Best Documentary Feature Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science Guests: Physicist/Director , Peter Galison | Shep Doeleman, Andrew Strominger Film Description: Black holes stand at the limit of what we can know. The Event Horizon Telescope links observatories across the world to simulate an earth-sized telescope. With this tool the team pursues the first-ever picture of a black hole, resulting in an image seen by billions of people in April 2019. Meanwhile, Hawking and his team attack the black hole paradox at the heart of theoretical physics—Do predictive laws still function, even in these massive distortions of space and time? Weaving them together is a third strand, philosophical and exploratory using expressive animation. “Edge” is about practicing science at the highest level, a film where observation, theory, and philosophy combine to grasp these most mysterious objects. | Length: 43 minutes

Topic: LIGO: The Way the Universe Is, I Think | Raw Science Film Festival 2020 Finalist Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science Guests: Physicist Rana Adhikari | Directors - Carrie McCarthy, Hussain Currimbhoy, Mark Pedri Description: A character documentary about a mechanic-turned-scientist who tuned the machine that spurred a dramatic re-envisioning of the universe through the detection of gravitational waves. Over 100 years after Einstein's theory of general relativity predicted the existence of gravitational waves, a team of scientists proved the theory by detecting the first wave using LIGO. This film examines the journey of a scientist who debugged the machine to find the signal in the noise of the universe. The film explores his life as a scientist and a musician, revealing how his character has informed his work that led to a Nobel Prize. | Length: 38 minutes

September 1, 2020

Episode 4: Collapse

Topic: Collapse| Raw Science Film Festival 2020 Finalist Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science Guests: Dr. Nelson Varas-Díaz, Director/Psychologist | Dr. Domingo Marqués, Clinical Psychologist | Mark Padilla, Producer Film Description: One hurricane, one study, thousands dead. On September 20, 2017 hurricane María hit the island of Puerto Rico with category four winds. The local government reported the number of dead at 64, while a Harvard University led study estimated 4645. This film tells the story of the research team that completed this historic study from the perspective of Dr. Domingo Marqués, the only team member to experience the hurricane firsthand. See how the local government reacted to the now famous study, and how a country that distrusts scientists prepares for the next catastrophic event. | Length: 27 minutes 

August 31, 2020

Episode 3: Hanger’s Limb

Topic: Hanger's Limb| Raw Science Film Festival 2020 Jury Award, Best Student Dramatic Short Moderator: Keri Kukral, Raw Science | Guests: Joel David Santner, Writer/Director | Markus Jorgenson, Actor - "James Hanger | Ryan Vaughaun, Sound Design | Film Description: After surviving a brutal amputation during the Civil War, James Hanger returns home emotionally and physically broken. In order to survive his depression, he designs and builds the first prosthetic leg with knee and ankle joints. Recipient of the Alfred P. Sloan Production Grant. | Length: 28 minutes 

Topic: What does the future hold for dealing with bio threats? What can we do scientifically and legally? Opening of casinos versus churches, the speed and safety of vaccines, the role of simulations and preparedness, and the responsibility of scientists versus federal agencies and the courts. Moderator: Sr. Judge Loren Smith, US Court of Federal Claims Guests: Dr. Asha George, Dr.PH -Executive Director of the Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense  | Dr. Robert Rosner, William E. Wrather Distinguished Service Professor in the Departments of Astronomy & Astrophysics and Physics, and the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago | Partner: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists | Length: 36 minutes 

Topic: Limits of government control over the movement of people including the dangers based on science. | Moderator: Sr. Judge Loren Smith, US Court of Federal Claims | Guests: Dr. Asha George, Dr.PH - Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense | Dr. Robert Rosner, William E. Wrather Distinguished Service Professor in the Departments of Astronomy & Astrophysics and Physics, and the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago | Partner: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists | Length: 53 minutes