Research Communications

Free screenings of intellectual thriller Feb. 7 at Athena Cinema 

By Taylor Evans
Jan. 29, 2013

The Ohio University Graduate College, Athena Cinema and Arts for Ohio are sponsoring exclusive screenings of the thriller Travelling Salesman for the Ohio University community. The free showings will be held at the Athena Cinema on Thursday, Feb. 7, at 6:30, 7:00, 8:30 and 9:00 p.m. Seating will be on a first come, first serve basis.

Math is power in Travelling Salesman. Directed by Timothy Lanzone, who shares writing credit with Andy Lanzone, the film focuses on four mathematicians brought together by the U.S. government to solve one of the world’s most complex computer science problems, P VS. NP.  The answer to the problem would not only advance progress in computer science and other fields such as biology, but also could serve as a powerful weapon if it were to fall into the wrong hands.

The four men are offered $10 million each for their participation and work on the algorithm, but must weigh the far-reaching consequences of sharing the solution with the government.

The film, which was voted “Best Feature Film” at the Silicon Valley Film Festival and was an official selection at the New York City International Film Festival, has garnered positive reviews since its June premiere in Philadelphia. 

Critic Jonathan Newman of draws parallels between the film and those of renowned directors such as Sidney Lumet, Darren Aronofsky and Stanley Kubrick. He praises the sharp writing and the “strong, compelling, forceful, thought-provoking dialogue.”

Travelling Salesman is the second in a series of films about research and graduate education sponsored by the Graduate College. The PhD Movie, which examined the life of a grad student with a twist of humor, drew hundreds of viewers to Templeton Blackburn Alumni Memorial Auditorium last year.

For more information and to check out the trailer for Travelling Salesman, visit The film is not yet rated, but contains material similar to a PG-13 movie.