Directed by Alejandro Amen
Starring Rachel Weisz
Official Synopsis: 4th century A.D. Egypt under the Roman Empire… Violent religious upheaval in the streets of Alexandria spills over into the city’s famous Library. Trapped inside its walls, the brilliant astronomer Hypatia and her disciples fight to save the wisdom of the Ancient World… Among them, the two men competing for her heart: the witty, privileged Orestes and Davus, Hypatia’s young slave, who is torn between his secret love for her and the freedom he knows can be his if he chooses to join the unstoppable surge of the Christians.
Agora is a historical epic set in Roman Egypt and focusing on the life and death of Hypatia (d.415), a Greek scholar from Alexandria, considered the first notable woman in mathematics, who also taught philosophy and astronomy.
The film was released in Spain in 2009 where it was a critical and commerical success. It was later released worldwide and is now available on DVD.
Los Angeles Times Review – “Agora has drawn criticism from Catholic organizations for perceived slights against Christians, but its lack of condemnation of specific dogma makes the film’s target seem to be fundamentalism in general. “Agora” is about many things, including Hypatia’s pursuit of the secrets of heavenly orbits and the frequent fate of intellectual women in rigidly paternalistic societies. But the primary tragedy conveyed is that one of the casualties in a war of ideologies is knowledge.”
Alejandro Amenabar’s Agora: a gift for classicists – article from The Guardian
Looking to the Heavens: Amenabar’s Hypatia and the Fall of Alexandria – by Dolores Martín Moruno