A while back, Paul Gowder suggested we scientists get our act together and make our own movie, for general consumption, countering the damnable and insipid lies of Ben Stein’s Expelled. Shortly thereafter, PZ Myers noted that, while he was sympathetic to the idea, it would be foolish to neglect the practical experience of filmmakers in doing so: the people who write the screenplay have to know how movies work.
Today, a variant of this proposal occurred to me. Somebody else may well have thought of it first, but I haven’t noticed the suggestion being made. Instead of explaining what evolution is all about, why not make a movie which explains why the Holocaust happened? To be sure, one historian will argue with another about which factors were most important in causing a sustained programme of cruelty to arise when and where it did, but a good documentary could lay all those factors out and, in so doing, make the point that Darwin and Wallace are not heading up the list.
Something tells me this project would be an easier sell than a feature-length nature show (I bet you could get Spielberg as an executive producer). And, at least in general terms, there’s a bit of a precedent for scientists entering this territory:
Discuss: what could be done that hasn’t been done before? What are the up-sides, down-sides and middle-sides of this idea?