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Mathematics Goes to the Movies

by Burkard Polster and Marty Ross


Starship Troopers (1997)

CARMEN: C'mon, let's see if they've posted the math final.
STUDENT: Rico, we gonna take Tesla?
JOHNNY: We’re gonna kill them.
They join other students around a MULTI-SCREEN KIOSK.
CARMEN: First thing Fleet Academy looks at is your math scores. Wish me luck !
Carmen enters her name, receives her score: 97% ! She beams.
JOHNNY: Good job.
CARMEN: Your turn...
Then she spots Carl across the way talking with MARCO, 17.
CARMEN: Hold on... I wanna talk to Marco. His sister's at Fleet !
Carmen rushes off. Johnny checks his score: 35% ! Crushed, he
makes sure no none else has seen. Carl walks up to him.

BIOLOGY TEACHER: We humans like to think we are nature’s finest achievement. I’m afraid it just isn’t true. This Arkellian sand beetle is superior in many ways. It reproduces in vast numbers, has no ego, has no fear, doesn’t know about death and so is the perfect selfless member of society.
CARMEN: But humans have created art, mathematics, and interstellar travel.