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The Best Movies About Real Scientists 

Ranker Film
Updated October 1, 2019 1.2k votes 452 voters 17.6k views 21 items

List Rules Vote up the best biographical movies about all kinds of scientists and researchers

This list of the best scientist biopics contains numerous highly-lauded films. Winner of four academy awards, A Beautiful Mind stars Russell Crowe as brilliant but troubled economist John Nash. A Nobel laureate, Nash suffers from paranoid schizophrenia, and his condition impacts his work, as well as his personal relationships.


So what are the top scientist biopics? Hollywood seems to have a love affair with Stephen Hawking, the subject of several biopics on this list. Most recently, Hawking was portrayed by Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything, a role that garnered him his first Academy Award.


Other notable scientists found on this list of the greatest scientist biopics include Marie Curie, Galileo, and Louis Pasteur. Vote up the best scientist biopics below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section.

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1
The Imitation Game is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Keira Knightley, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong

Released: 2014

Directed by: Morten Tyldum

The Imitation Game is a 2014 historical thriller film directed by Morten Tyldum, with a screenplay by Graham Moore loosely based on the biography Alan Turing: The Enigma by Andrew Hodges. It ...more

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2
The Man Who Knew Infinit... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Abhi Baisla added The Man Who Knew Infinity Jeremy Irons, Dev Patel, Stephen Fry

Released: 2016

Directed by: Matt Brown

The Man Who Knew Infinity is a biopic of  S Ramanujan, the great mathematician, who had no formal training in mathematics still he made great contribution in mathematics like number theory, infinite series, continued fraction etc. He was also the member of royal society of cambridge university.

3
A Beautiful Mind is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Jennifer Connelly, Russell Crowe, Ron Howard

Released: 2001

Directed by: Ron Howard

A Beautiful Mind is a 2001 American biographical drama film based on the life of John Nash, a Nobel Laureate in Economics. The film was directed by Ron Howard, from a screenplay written by Akiva ...more

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4
The Theory of Everything... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Harry Lloyd

Released: 2014

Directed by: James Marsh

The Theory of Everything is a 2014 British biographical coming of age romantic drama film directed by James Marsh and adapted by Anthony McCarten from the memoir Travelling to Infinity: My Life ...more

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5
Hawking is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Benedict Cumberbatch, Alice Eve, John Sessions

Released: 2004

Directed by: Philip Martin

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Hawking is a BBC television film about Stephen Hawking's early years as a PhD student at Cambridge University, following his search for the beginning of time, and his struggle against motor ...more
6
The Secret of Nikola Tes... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
DangerousSurya added The Secret of Nikola Tesla Orson Welles, Strother Martin, Dennis Patrick

Released: 1980

Directed by: Krsto Papić

The Secret of Nikola Tesla, is a 1980 Yugoslav biographical film which details events in the life of the discoverer Nikola Tesla. Tesla was born to ethnic Serb parents in 1856 Croatia. He ...more
7
Awakenings is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Robert De Niro, Robin Williams, Vin Diesel

Released: 1990

Directed by: Penny Marshall

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Awakenings is a 1990 American drama film based on Oliver Sacks' 1973 memoir of the same title. It tells the true story of British neurologist Oliver Sacks, fictionalized as American Malcolm ...more

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8
Hidden Figures is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
BioKimistry added Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe

Released: 2016

Directed by: Theodore Melfi

Hidden Figures is a 2016 American biographical drama film directed by Theodore Melfi, based on the non-fiction book by Margot Lee Shetterly. The story of a team of female African-American ...more

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9
Creation is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Jennifer Connelly, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany

Released: 2009

Directed by: Jon Amiel

Creation is a 2009 British biographical drama film. Produced by Jeremy Thomas, the film was directed by Jon Amiel, and stars Paul Bettany and Jennifer Connelly as Charles and Emma Darwin. The ...more
10
Temple Grandin is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Claire Danes, Julia Ormond, Catherine O'Hara

Released: 2010

Directed by: Mick Jackson

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Temple Grandin is a 2010 biopic directed by Mick Jackson and starring Claire Danes as Temple Grandin, a woman with autism who revolutionized practices for the humane handling of livestock on ...more

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11
Gorillas in the Mist is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Sigourney Weaver, Iain Glen, Bryan Brown

Released: 1988

Directed by: Michael Apted

Gorillas in the Mist is a 1988 American drama film directed by Michael Apted and starring Sigourney Weaver as naturalist Dian Fossey. It tells the true story of her work in Rwanda with Mountain ...more

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12
Madame Curie is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Greer Garson, Margaret O'Brien, Walter Pidgeon

Released: 1943

Directed by: Mervyn LeRoy

Madame Curie is a 1943 biographical film made by MGM. The film was directed by Mervyn LeRoy and produced by Sidney Franklin from a screenplay by Paul Osborn, Paul H. Rameau, and Aldous Huxley, ...more
13
Infinity is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
piyush added Matthew Broderick, Patricia Arquette, Željko Ivanek

Released: 1996

Directed by: Matthew Broderick

Infinity is a 1996 American biographical drama film about the early life of physicist Richard Feynman. Feynman was played by Matthew Broderick, who also directed and produced the film. ...more
14
Galileo is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Galileo Cyril Cusack, Piero Vida, Georgi Kaloyanchev

Released: 1968

Directed by: Liliana Cavani

Galileo is a 1968 Italian-Bulgarian biographical drama film directed by Liliana Cavani. It depicts the life of Galileo Galilei and particularly his clash with the Catholic Church.
15
The Story of Louis Paste... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Paul Muni, Anita Louise, Donald Woods

Released: 1936

Directed by: William Dieterle

The Story of Louis Pasteur is a 1936 American biographical film. It starred Paul Muni as the renowned scientist who developed major advances in microbiology which revolutionized agriculture and ...more

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16
Kinsey is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Liam Neeson, Tim Curry, John Lithgow

Released: 2004

Directed by: Bill Condon

Kinsey is a 2004 American biographical drama film written and directed by Bill Condon. It describes the life of Alfred Charles Kinsey, a pioneer in the area of sexology. His 1948 publication, ...more

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17
Agora is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Rachel Weisz, Oscar Isaac, Max Minghella

Released: 2009

Directed by: Alejandro Amenábar

Agora is a 2009 Spanish English-language historical drama film directed by Alejandro Amenábar and written by Amenábar and Mateo Gil. The biopic stars Rachel Weisz as Hypatia, a ...more

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18
The Road to Wellville is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Ferry73 added Anthony Hopkins, Matthew Broderick, John Cusack

Released: 1994

Directed by: Alan Parker

The Road to Wellville is a 1994 American comedy-drama film adaptation of T. Coraghessan Boyle's novel of the same name, which tells the story of the doctor and clean-living advocate John Harvey ...more
19
Copenhagen is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Daniel Craig, Stephen Rea, Francesca Annis

Released: 2002

Directed by: Howard Davies

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Copenhagen is a 2002 British television drama film written and directed by Howard Davies and starring Daniel Craig and Stephen Rea. It is based in Michael Frayn's 1998 Tony Award-winning play of ...more
20
Conceiving Ada is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Tilda Swinton, Karen Black, Timothy Leary

Released: 1997

Directed by: Lynn Hershman Leeson

Emmy Coer, a computer genius, devises a method of communicating with the past by tapping into undying information waves. She manages to reach the world of Ada Lovelace, founder of the idea of a ...more
21
Fat Man and Little Boy ... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Real Scientists
Paul Newman, John Cusack, Laura Dern

Released: 1989

Directed by: Roland Joffé

Fat Man and Little Boy is a 1989 film that reenacts the Manhattan Project. The film is named after the weapons "Fat Man" and "Little Boy" detonated over Nagasaki and ...more

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