Science Night 1/29

Nature The Funkiest Monkeys at 7 pm
Twenty-five years ago, filmmaker Colin Stafford-Johnson (recently the central character in NATURE’s Broken Tail: A Tiger’s Last Journey) travelled to Sulawesi in Indonesia and fell in love with crested black macaques. These feisty monkeys are beach bums with punk hairstyles, expressive faces, copper colored eyes and some very unusual habits, making them some of the most charismatic of all monkeys. They only exist on this one island. Learning that their numbers have dropped dramatically, he makes a return visit to find out why and to see if he can help. Teaming up with a local expert and making a film about them and their plight allows him to share their story with the local schools and communities in the hope that a new understanding of the wonderful creatures in their midst will make them want to help, as well.

NOVA Ghosts Of Murdered Kings at 8 pm
NOVA follows archaeologists and forensic experts in Ireland’s County Tipperary in their methodical hunt for clues to the identity and the circumstances of various violent deaths of bog body victims. A new theory emerges that they are those of ritually murdered kings, gruesomely slain to assure the fertility of land and people.

Hawking at 9 pm
This is the intimate and revealing story of Stephen Hawking’s life. Told for the first time in Hawking’s own words and with unique access to his home and public life, this is a personal journey through Hawking’s world. The audience joins him at home, under the care of his nursing team; in San Jose as he “wows” a packed theatre audience; in Silicon Valley as he meets a team of technicians who hope to speed up his communication system; and as he throws a party for family and friends. HAWKING also carefully tells Hawking’s life journey, from boyhood under-achiever to PhD genius, and from a healthy cox on the Oxford rowing team to diagnosis of motor neuron disease, given just two years to live yet surviving several close brushes with death. The film also highlights his greatest scientific discoveries and plots his rise to fame and superstardom.