The wonders of the world are what amaze us. Man has been an engineer since perhaps the beginning of time, creating incredible structures that leave us in awe. It is evident in the Great Wall of China (China), Christ the Redeemer Statue (Rio de Janeiro), Machu Picchu (Peru), Chichen Itza (Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico), The Roman Colosseum (Rome), Taj Mahal (Agra, India) and so much more.
Now available on DVD, Dream Big: Engineering Our World, an Imax tribute to feats of engineering across the ages — ancient, contemporary, hypothetical — offers its fair share of visceral 3D thrills.
The film offers stunning views of Earth from a space capsule; aerial views of bridges and skylines.
But, it begins in a more simple time, with children. The curiosity that encourages children to pretend, to imagine, create and build. That’s truly who this feature was designed for, kids.
The film share engineering in our world with a focus on teamwork, the power of imagination and problem-solving. It’s a great resource for STEM teachers to share with their students and perfect for the parent to watch with a child who is fascinated by STEM.
Greg MacGillivray (The Living Sea) teams up with Brad Ohlund, director of cinematography, and Ron Goodman, aerial photography expert to introduce the wide-ranging material.
Jeff Bridges’ narrates the film. His iconic voice adds to the amazement and the inspiration.
It’s a fascinating film that leads us from the sticky rice mortar of the Great Wall to a one-of-a-kind Falkirk Wheel.
William was inspired by Angelica Hernandez. She was a member of the high school robotics team from Underwater Dreams, whose robot outperformed sleeker models from MIT and other college teams. The film introduces us to Fredi Lajvardi, Hernandez’s teacher who plays himself in the recreation of the team, bringing their can-do spirit to larger than life.
We met Menzer Pehlivan who is an expert in earthquake safety. She was 13 years old when a devastating earthquake in her home country of Turkey hit, setting her career path. Her engineering includes factors in the emotional aftershocks as she engineers preventative measures. This was perhaps the most powerful part of the film for me that engineering is sometimes about far more than the nuts and bolts.
Engineering is also about bringing communities together. The film tells the work of Avery Bang who is the head of Bridges to Prosperity, they build footbridges in the developing world. We are part of Bang’s team as they work on a suspension bridge in Haiti that will allow the residents of remote riparian communities safe access to facilities on the other side of the river. There is a tremendous joy watching school children cross the bridge when it is finished.
And while we’re in awe of what we can build, we also recognized the need to ask questions. All of them. To understand that not all ideas work, such as the 1940 Tacoma Narrows Bridge, which buckled and collapsed.
It’s a great film to inspire children to dream big. To lead them further to research and experiment and to build their future.
Dream Big is 42 minutes in duration and a great film for those interested in STEM.