S01E10 Avatar: Exoskeletons Made Out of Washing Machines

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

James Cameron’s epic science fiction film Avatar was a breakthrough in 3D technology when it was released. In it, Jake Sully is a parapalegic former marine who takes control of an Avatar to explore a planet that is essentially a… brain. In this episode, Deeptha joins us to help us learn about spinal cords, what happens when they become damaged, how closely related we are to zebrafish, and whether or not you can (and should) make a tiger avatar. We also debate whether Heidi should continue creating an avatar in her basement or switch to making an exoskeleton out of washing machine parts.

S01E09 A Quiet Place: A Parent's Dream World of Silent Monopoly

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

If they hear you, they hunt you. We watched A Quiet Place in which a post-apocalyptic world of silence is overrun by creatures that hunt using sound. A bearded-John Krasinski and his family navigate this quiet world, surviving games of Monopoly, grain silos, and babies. Bioengineering Graduate Student Marta Iversen joins us to help us understand how we hear, how hearing aids and cochlear implants work, and how hearing compares to a cat.

S01E08 Rick & Morty: Voles, Dogs, & Love Potions

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

Rick and Morty: Rick Potion #9, Rick creates a love serum for Morty to use at the school dance; as per usual, a mantis-disaster occurs leading to a world of hurt and destruction. Rick confesses the delicate balance of designing a love potion, but what does neuroscientist Joshua Barrios think? In this episode, Josh talks about monogamous voles, whether petting your dog can cause oxytocin release, and what combination of species’ DNA he would use to create the most dangerous animal possible.

S01E07 Lucy Unlocks Her Brain: 30% Capacity Will SHOCK You!

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

Because our first season is all about the brain, it’s no surprise that we would ultimately watch Lucy. This movie stems from the myth that living creatures use 10% of their brain, and unlocking the rest of the brain results in reality-altering abilities. Neuroscientist Danielle Giangrasso helps us understand how much of our brain we use, whether we can manipulate our “brain capacity,” and whether or not Morgan Freeman actually knows how to apply the scientific method.


S01E06 Alien Parasites: House Hunters, Xenomorph

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV
We watched Alien, a movie about parasitic Xenomorphs that use anything and anyone as their host. Jaycie Loewen joins us to discuss the various parasites that are searching for a home. Could you be their next host?


S01E05 Inception: Does Anne Dream of Concrete Origami?

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV
Christopher Nolan’s Inception ignited a worldwide debate on spinning tops and made us question our dream security. Neuroscience graduate student Kyle Jenks joins us to reveal what our brain is doing while we sleep, why we dream, how we study sleep in the laboratory, and who he would incept, given the chance.


S01E04 Men in Black Neuralyzers: Salient Hot Dog Memory

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

We watched Men in Black, an unforgettable movie that caused 90s kids everywhere to question whether or not their parents are aliens. Graduate student Ariadne Penalva teaches us how we store and retrieve memories, why it's hard to forget that embarrassing thing you did 10 years ago, and whether or not neurolyzers can erase your memory of an alien.

S01E03 Alien vs Predator vs Space Cow: The 5 Alien Senses

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

Aliens (Xenomorphs) and Predators (Yautjas) have been battling each other for thousands of years, resulting in an evolutionary arms race. For whatever reason, humans find themselves in the middle of this war and are the clear loser. Special guest Andrew Moran joins us to explore the sensory biology of these species and we debate which alien reigns supreme in the Alien vs Predator (AVP) franchise!

S01E02 Gattaca’s Designer Baby Astronauts: Editing the Murder Gene

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

In this episode, we watched Gattaca, a science fiction movie from 1997 that asks the question: what if we could alter our destiny with a little genetic engineering? Sasha Luks-Morgan helps us understand how exactly genetic editing works, what the heck CRISPR stands for, and whether or not we can actually splice super powers into our DNA.

S01E01 Drunken Master Fighting Style: Optimal Headbutting Technique

Cinema Science | Podcast | Movies & TV

We watched Drunken Master, and worshiped Jackie Chan’s comedic kung fu youthfulness. In this episode, Andrew Taibi demonstrates that he is not only the biggest kung fu fan in the world, but he’s also incredibly knowledgeable in traumatic brain injury (TBI) and alcohol. How do they affect your fighting technique and your brain? Listen to find out!