a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)
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Highly Rated! 
In this Spanish thriller, four mathematicians are invited to a booby trapped room where they must solve mathematical puzzles to prevent the walls from closing in and crushing them. This leaves them little time to puzzle out the most important question of what they have in common and who might want to kill them.
One of the four is a young mathematician famous for having proved Goldbach's Conjecture. The others are an engineer who disdains pure mathematics, a sad older man who enjoys only math and chess, and a young woman. Despite Fermat's name being in the title, Fermat's Last Theorem is not at all important here. Each character is given a pseudonym (Hilbert, Galois, etc.) and the invitations they received were signed by "Fermat". Actually, Goldbach's Conjecture is the main mathematical topic of interest. (Still, in thinking about what else "Fermat" might mean, I wonder if we are supposed to see a parallel between the walls closing in to crush them and Fermat's famous statement that the "margins are too narrow...."? No probably not.) Some squeamish viewers or concerned parents (I count myself as being in both sets) may be interested in knowing that this movie is not nearly as violent as similar films like Cube. There are a few deaths caused by the evil plot, but they are not bloody or gory. The DVD with English subtitles is now available in all of the usual places, and you can see the preview on YouTube. Thanks to Stan Cohen for bringing it to my attention!

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(Note: This is just one work of mathematical fiction from the list. To see the entire list or to see more works of mathematical fiction, return to the Homepage.) 

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(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)