InScience Film Festival


International Science Film Festival Nijmegen is back with 53 films about science that make us look at the world around us differently. The ninth edition will take place from March 12 to 17, 2024. This year’s theme program focuses on ‘Language’.

Inscience 2024

For six days, InScience will screen the very best science films of the past year on a big screen, including no fewer than 30 premieres. Films about the most diverse subjects: from light pollution to sign language. Films about what it means to be altruistic or what social isolation does to us.

The festival opens on March 12 with a special ‘Brainlanding’. At the Nijmegen Donders Institute, a few kilometers from the festival, a test subject will watch film fragments in a brain scanner. Renowned brain scientist Peter Hagoort will analyze brain activity live in the cinema.

Language theme program
In addition to the usual selection of films and talks, this edition’s theme program focuses on language. Language is at the core of our culture, it allows us to understand the world around us. This year, InScience explores the possibilities of AI and language, unravels the fictional language of Dune, laughs at ‘Steenkolenengels’, conducts research into the evolution of gestures and learns about stuttering during the Stuttering Hour.

Languages invented for film
‘Conlangers’ David & Jessie Peterson will give this year’s Big Ideas lecture. They invent languages for series and films, such as Valyrian in Game of Thrones. They also worked on the language for this spring’s blockbuster: Dune: Part Two. How do you actually give meaning to an invented language?

This program is a collaboration with Radboud Reflects.

Double Dutch
Comedian Derek Scott Mitchell is a phenomenon on TikTok under the name Double Dutch. In his videos he plays with accents: Dutch people speaking Steenkolenengels, British people speaking Dutch and Americans imitating a British accent. During InScience he will perform and talk to a scientist about multilingualism.

Exhibition and experiment
What can AI already do and what cannot it do? In the Huis van de Nijmeegse Geschiedenis we exhibit the work of artist and researcher Katarina Petrović. Can AI reformulate a book into its opposite? Petrović’s AI artwork takes a stab at Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species. Lectures on language, evolution and creativity and AI provide depth.

Stand-up Science
During ‘Stand-up Science’, LUX café will be transformed into a stand-up club with several short presentations and live demonstrations about language. What  can we learn about Macedonian if you let people retell Macedonian folktales? How do deaf children learn sign language? What is your cat trying to tell you? And how do you create poems based on the most beautiful sentences selected from dissertations by AI?

Films about language
We also show film classics such as Arrival (2016) and L’Enfant Sauvage (1971). In the talks accompanying the films, linguist Simon Fisher delves into the brains and learning skills surrounding language acquisition and Luis Miguel Rojas-Berscia (who speaks 19 languages fluently) explains why he has now focused on Nimweegs.

This program is a collaboration with the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics.

Junior program
For younger visitors there is a special junior program on language with various language experiments, such as code or secret language! Is there a form of animal language? On Saturday, March 16, we will organize exciting language experiments for children together with Kletskoppen. Then they can relax at the film screening of E.T. the Extra Terrestrial (1982). The Klokhuis Wetenschapsprijs 2024 will be awarded on Sunday, March 17.

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