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Freep Film Festival: Luminous (Sam Smartt, Larry Molnar)

  • April 28, 2022–May 1, 2022

Join Calvin professors Sam Smartt and Larry Molnar at the Freep Film Festival for a showing of Luminous

Luminous, a 95-minute documentary film, follows Professor Molnar and a team of Calvin students who embark on a journey of scientific discovery as they predict the near-future explosion of a star. Others in the astronomical community are skeptical, and Larry’s professional reputation hangs in the balance. In Luminous, Sam follows Larry’s journey to test his unprecedented prediction, knowing that its success or failure will unfold squarely in the international spotlight.

Watch the film's trailer »

Film dates and times

  • April 28–May 1: Available virtually

  • May 1: Available in-person (1 p.m.) with discussion following (3:30 p.m.)
    Michigan Science Center (Planetarium)

To watch the film online April 28–May 1, or attend the May 1 showing, click "Buy Tickets Here" on the Luminous page on the festival website

After the film

Join Dr. Larry Molnar for a talk called “The Backstory of Contact Binary Stars”. In the talk, Dr. Molnar will discuss how contact binary stars end their long lives by merging in an explosive event known as a red nova. What are the steps that take these special binary stars (orbiting so closely they are touching) from a long, tranquil relationship to the inevitability of a violent end? This presentation will reveal the backstory he and his team have recently uncovered. 

  • May 1: The Backstory of Contact Binary Stars” (3:30 p.m.)
    Michigan Science Center


  • Michigan Science Center
  • 5020 John R St
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • 48202
April 2022
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