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ReAction! Chemistry in the Movies
by Mark Griep and Marjorie Mikasen
Mark Griep is Associate Professor of Chemistry at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He studies bacterial DNA replication enzymes in his search for new antibiotics.
Marjorie Mikasen is an abstract expressionist painter whose work is in several collections including the Sheldon Art Museum. She is represented by Modern Arts Midtown in Omaha. The authors are married and share a love of art, science, movies, and local history.
This book was based on research supported by a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
ReAction Chemistry Chapter 1
ReAction Chemistry Chapter 2
Hollow Man (2000)
Dr. Sebastian Caine (Kevin Bacon) develops a human invisibility compound and convinces his colleagues to test its effect on him.
Now You See Him, Now You Don’t (1972)
Undergraduate Dexter Riley (Kurt Russell) invents invisibility spray and uses it to save Medfield College from developer Mr. Arno (Cesar Romero).
The Invisible Agent (1942)
Frank Raymond (Jon Hall) uses his grandfather’s invisibility formula to outwit the Nazis.
The Invisible Woman (1940)
(1940) Kitty Carroll (Virginia Bruce) uses Professor Gibbs’s (John Barrymore) invisibility process to revenge herself against her boss Mr. Growley (Charles Lane).
The Invisible Man Returns (1940)
Frank Griffin (John Sutton), Jack’s brother, helps his partner Geoffrey Radcliffe (Vincent Price) escape a death sentence and works on the duocaine reversion formula.
The Invisible Man (1933)
Assistant food preservation chemist Jack Griffin (Claude Rains) takes monocaine invisibility formula, can’t reverse invisibility, goes insane, and kills people.
ReAction Chemistry Chapter 3
United 93 (2006)
Hypothetical reconstruction of the highjacking of United Airlines flight 93 on September 11, 2001.
The Quiet American (2002)
London Times reporter Thomas Fowler (Michael Caine) vies with American undercover agent Alden Pyle (Brendan Fraser) for Phuong’s (Do Thi Hai Yen) affection in 1950s Vietnam.
Military Industrialist Norman Osborn (Willem Dafoe) takes untested performance enhancement drug and becomes the Green Goblin.
The Sum of All Fears (2002)
CIA Analyst Jack Ryan (Ben Affleck) must stop a terrorist plot to use a stolen nuclear warhead to incite war between Russia and the United States. The true source of the warhead is discovered using isotope analysis.
The Rock (1996)
Rogue marine commandos threaten to use VX gas missiles against San Francisco.
Fat Man and Little Boy (1989)
General Leslie Groves (Paul Newman) persuades physicist Robert Oppenheimer (Dwight Schulz) to begin and then to complete the Manhattan Project.
ConSec Corporation has created people with telekinetic and telepathic powers, including one who intends to dominate the world and another who intends to stop him.
Dr. Strangelove; or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
General Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden) acts on his belief that public water fluoridation is proof the communists have already begun to take control of the United States.
The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933)
Berlin Police Inspector Karl Lohmann (Otto Wernicke) traces crimes to mastermind Dr. Mabuse (Rudolf Klein-Rogge), who is locked in an asylum.
ReAction Chemistry Chapter 4
The Constant Gardener (2005)
After activist Tessa Quayle (Rachel Weisz) is murdered in Kenya, diplomat husband Justin (Ralph Fiennes) searches for the reason.
Erin Brockovich (2000)
Amateur lawyer Erin Brockovich (Julia Roberts) develops chromium case against Pacific Gas & Electric and wins.
Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy (1996)
Roritor Pharmaceutical chemist Chris Connor (Kevin McDonald) develops antidepressant Gleemonex and company releases it before sufficient testing.
Carol White (Julianne Moore) acquires multiple chemical sensitivity.
I Love Trouble (1994)
Rival news reporters Peter Brackett (Nick Nolte) and Sabrina Peterson (Julia Roberts) compete for a story about a corrupt chemical company producing a carcinogen.
Biography of whistleblower Karen Silkwood (Meryl Streep) set in 1974, the year that she died or was killed on her way to meet a journalist about workplace safety violations.
The Incredible Shrinking Woman (1981)
Suburban housewife Pat Kramer (Lily Tomlin) starts shrinking after exposure to a mixture of “Sexpot” perfume and a new detergent.
Soylent Green (1973)
Ecodisaster dystopia about New York City Police Detective Robert Thorn (Charlton Heston), who investigates the murder of Soylent Corporation director William R. Simonson (Joseph Cotten).
Riders of the Whistling Pines
Gene Autry (Gene Autry) supervises DDT spraying to prevent tussock moth forest infestation and then stockmen blame him for animal deaths.