Fermat’s Room (La habitación de Fermat)
“Do you know what prime numbers are? Because if you don't, you should just leave now.” This represents the first line from “Fermat’s Room”, a 2007 Spanish thriller film directed by Rodrigo Sopeña and Luis Piedrahita and I can honestly say that it successfully achieves its twofold aim: not only does the sentence catch the viewer’s attention since the first seconds, but it also warns that this movie looks like nothing one has seen before.
There is no denying the fact that “Fermat’s Room” is the proof that art and science are more alike than different. These two elements coexist harmoniously in the movie, whose action takes place mainly in a single room. The protagonists of the film, four brilliant mathematicians are invited by a man called “Fermat” to an isolated house, giving as a pretext a great enigma which must be solved by them. However, the room in which Galois, Hilbert, Pascal and Oliva are locked turns out to be a trap, since the only apparent way to escape from the slowly closing walls of the shrinking room is to rapidly solve different puzzles given by the guest.
One of the film’s plus points is the way in which its intricate plot develops. During the ninety minutes runtime, one will witness many plot twists which, together with the stunning mathematics elements, create an adrenaline-filled movie. Suspense is one of the main characters of this thriller and, despite the fact that the film refers to a vast array of mathematical problems, whose solutions presented by the characters may be somehow difficult to keep up with, I feel sure that any person who is fond of suspenseful, mysterious scenes will not be capable of taking his or her eyes off the screen.
“Fermat’s Room” is all about enigmas, mystery and suspense, while details like Goldbach’s conjecture and Blaise Pascal’s age when he died indeed represent the icing on the cake. If you are an avid fan of complex storylines and are eager to discover some of the most fiendish mathematical problems one can imagine, you will not regret watching this second-to-none movie!