Agora means meeting place in ancient Greek and this remarkable, remarkably humane, film keeps its eyes open to the humanity of all sides who meet in battle over issues of science, religion and truth.
Agora tells the story of Hypatia, the last astronomer of the library of Alexandria. The library was a storehouse of classical learning. Hypatia was killed by Christian mobs in the 4th century (those mobs may also have attacked the library). This remarkable movie looks directly at the willful ignorance of religious fanaticism and its effect on Alexandria, but never stoops to caricatures. It also captures the awe and wonder that animates science's own innate sense of the sacred.
Rachel Weisz shows such keen intelligence as Hypatia that its hard not to fall in love with her as deeply as her students do. But, alas, Hypatia is only interested in the stars and Weisz is true to that particular form of scientific obsession that still holds true today.
This movie is a must-see for those interested in the history of science, the history of the science-and-religion debate and those who would finally like to see that whole "elliptical orbit" thing explained.
Agora showed up on Netflix recently, so give up your plans for Sunday and watch this film!