Talks, Classes, and Films

The Museum offers talks, classes, film festivals, and other informal learning. Nat Talks, made possible with support from presenting sponsor The Downing Family Foundation and media partner KPBS, feature museum staff and outside experts and authors from around the country speaking on an array of topics, including the latest in scientific research, history, conservation, and the natural world. Reel Science, presented by The Nat and Digital Gym Cinema, takes place Fridays in May (two events will be at The Nat and two events will be hosted at Digital Gym). Enjoy ascience-fiction movie, followed by commentary from a local scientist, who will provide contextualized and corrective feedback about the film’s scientific themes.

Nat Talks and film events take place in the Charmaine and Maurice Kaplan Theater.

Tickets to all events may be purchased online, at the Museum, or by calling 877.946.7797.

If it's our regular, daily schedule of 2D and 3D films you're looking for, please visit our Giant Screen Theater page. Films are included with paid admission.



Upcoming Events


Reel Science: The Fly

Friday, May 3, 2019 7 PM

Join us for a screening of The Fly, presented by The Nat and Digital Gym. Before the film, Eric Leonardis, Ph.D. candidate in cognitive science at UC San Diego, will provide contextualized and corrective feedback about the scientific themes in the film. Afterwards, he will answer audience questions. 

The Fly is a 1986 science-fiction biological horror film that tells the story of an eccentric scientist who, after one of his experiments goes wrong, slowly turns into a fly-hybrid creature. Tickets are $9 for members and $12 for non-members. 

Reel Science is made possible with an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theater, with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Note: this screening is hosted at Digital Gym Cinema (2921 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92104).




Reel Science: The Martian

Friday, May 10, 2019 7 PM

Join us for a screening of The Martian, presented by The Nat and Digital Gym. Before the film, Dr. Brian Shotwell, assistant teaching professor of physics at UC San Diego, will provide contextualized and corrective feedback about the scientific themes in the film. Afterwards, he will answer audience questions. 

The Martian is a 2015 science fiction film based on Andy Weir’s 2011 novel of the same name. The film depicts an astronaut's lone struggle to survive on Mars after having been left behind, and efforts to rescue him. Tickets are $9 for members and $12 for non-members. 

Reel Science is made possible with an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theater, with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Note: this screening is hosted at The Nat. 

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Nat Talk: The Untold Story of the Honey Bee in the Wild

Tuesday, May 14, 2019 7 PM

Humans have kept honey bees in hives for millennia, but only in recent decades have biologists begun to investigate how these industrious insects live in the wild. Author and Cornell University Professor Tom Seeley will present the captivating story of what scientists are learning about the behavior, social life, and survival strategies of honey bees living outside beekeepers’ hives.

Tom Seeley will show why wild colonies of honey bees living in forests are thriving while the managed colonies living in beekeepers' apiaries are in crisis. This Nat Talk  offers a new vision of how beekeeping can better align with the natural habits of honey bees. After the talk, Tom will sign copies of his book, The Lives of Bees: The Untold Story of the Honey Bee in the Wild, available for purchase in the Museum store.

Museum doors open at 5:30 PM and the talk begins at 7 PM. Food, beer, and wine will be available for purchase at the Flying Squirrel Café before the talk.

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Reel Science: World War Z

Friday, May 17, 2019 7 PM

Join us for a screening of World War Z, presented by The Nat and Digital Gym. Before the film, Dr. Meredith Frie, research associate at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, will provide contextualized and corrective feedback about the scientific themes in the film. Afterwards, she will answer audience questions. 

World War Zis a 2013 American apocalyptic actionhorror film based on the 2006 novel of the same name by Max Brooks. It is centered on a former United Nations investigator who must travel the world to find a way to stop a zombie pandemic.Tickets are $9 for members and $12 for non-members. 

Reel Science is made possible with an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theater, with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Note: this screening is hosted at The Nat. 

Purchase Tickets



Reel Science: Damnation Alley

Friday, May 24, 2019 7 PM

Join us for a screening of Damnation Alley, presented by The Nat and Digital Gym. Before the film, Dr. Michael Wall, curator of entomology and vice president of science and conservation at The Nat, will provide contextualized and corrective feedback about the scientific themes in the film. Afterwards, he will answer audience questions. 

Damnation Alleyis a 1977 post-apocalyptic film loosely based on the novel of the same name by Roger Zelazny. It features five people who survive the nuclear holocaust and their incredible odyssey through the nightmare world it created. Tickets are $9 for members and $12 for non-members. 

Reel Science is made possible with an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theater, with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Note: this screening is hosted at Digital Gym Cinema (2921 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92104).

 




Nat Talk: How to Walk on Water and Climb Up Walls | Animal Movement and the Robots of the Future

Tuesday, June 11, 2019 7 PM

From the incredible efficiency of the wet dog shake to colonies of ants building rafts out of their own bodies, animals move with astounding grace, speed, and versatility. But how do they do it, and what can we learn from them? 

Georgia Tech Mechanical Engineer and Author David Hu will present how animals have adapted and evolved to traverse their environments, taking advantage of physical laws with results that are startling and ingenious. After the talk, David will sign copies of his book, How to Walk on Water and Climb up Walls: Animal Movement and the Robots of the Future. Books areavailable for purchase at the museum store.

Museum doors open at 5:30 PM and the talk begins at 7 PM. Food, beer, and wine will be available for purchase at the Flying Squirrel Café before the talk.

Purchase Tickets