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The spectacular opening to Jon Else's critically acclaimed WONDERS ARE MANY - nuclear blast after blast in the desert, under the ocean, high in space - intimates what is to follow: a profound and triumphant fusing of art and science, humanity and technology, destruction and creation.
WONDERS ARE MANY: THE MAKING OF DOCTOR ATOMIC traces a dazzling double-helix trajectory: one thread follows composer John Adams and director Peter Sellars as they work to create Doctor Atomic, the strange and beautiful opera about J. Robert Oppenheimer and the first atomic bomb; the other recounts the actual historical events that underpin the stage drama. Masterfully interwoven with recently declassified footage of nuclear testing in the deserts of the Southwest and the frenetic backstage action of the San Francisco Opera, the film creates an explosive vortex of performers and physicists, past and present, all of which is anchored by the enigmatic figure of Oppenheimer and channeled into high art by the creative power of Adams and Sellars.
A magnificent pastiche of potent elements, WONDERS ARE MANY allows us to see history - and ourselves - in a new light: we learn the humanity in science; the regret in discovery; and, unforgettably, the law that "matter can be neither created nor destroyed," but only transformed.
Possibly the best "making of" a contemporary opera ever captured on video. For any student of serious music or performance, this is a must!Published 16 months ago by grgeory j punch
I had seen this film before and was impressed by the story and the quality of the filming. It's an excellent story of both the making of the opera and of the story behind the... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Prudence J Hall
I figured they're would have been more clips of atomic bomb blast but it didn't deliver much of them. Read morePublished on February 1, 2013 by iconicdave
This is mainly a behind-the-scenes account of the making of the John Adams opera Doctor Atomic. The central character in the opera is J. Read morePublished on December 22, 2009 by Sanpete
When I heard about this documentary, I just knew I had to see it. No only am I huge physics geek, but I am a great lover of the opera and other performing arts. Read morePublished on December 23, 2008 by Susan Tunis
The Atomic Bomb & Opera. Three words you probably thought you'd never see used together. And yet that's exactly what the documentary, "Wonders Are Many," is all about: Making an... Read morePublished on December 18, 2008 by Mr.
This documentary follows the creative process brilliantly.The muti talented John Adams is joined by Peter Sellars[who if not wrote assembled the libretto, and directed! Read morePublished on December 7, 2008 by A. Hogan
Jon Else's exciting new documentary is full of many wonders. The film simultaneously explores scientist Robert Oppenheimer's work in developing the atomic bomb and director Peter... Read morePublished on November 29, 2008 by Nathan Andersen
I fully and heartily concur with the other reviewers who have awarded this documentary five stars. But it is obvious that the original film was for wide-screen, and yet this DVD-R... Read morePublished on November 29, 2008 by RENS