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Scientists in the cinematic imaginary as pop-culture cliches

by Critical Commons Manager

In this narratively inconsequential scene from Jurassic Park, Jeff Goldblum reprises his role from Cronenberg's The Fly as a misunderstood genius and unlikely ladies' man. Dr. Ian Malcolm is a nihilistic  (note all black wardrobe and generally cavalier demeanor) mathematician who uses his knowledge of chaos theory as a pretense for attempting to seduce the paleobotanist Dr. Ellie Sattler played by Laura Dern. Goldblum's explanation of chaos theory, which claimed a significant role in the cultural imaginary of the early 1990s, resorts to disappointing cliches but appears to be nonetheless effective in charming his fellow scientist.

A geek chic explanation of chaos theory in Jurassic Park

A nihilistic chaos theorist uses pseudoscience for seduction

from Jurassic Park (1993)
Creator: Steven Spielberg
Distributor: Universal Pictures
Posted by Critical Commons Manager