They invent. They build. They discover. In our fast-paced world that demands the latest, greatest gadget and the biggest, tallest buildings, engineers make a big difference in just about every aspect of our lives.
"Dream Big 3D," now showing at Marbles Kids Museum's IMAX theater, tells that story. From the complex work to get into space and explore it to the important efforts to build a simple wooden bridge so kids can get to school, the 42-minute movie covers the many ways engineers contribute to the world.
In fact, the contributions are so impactful and important, the movie, in the words of a friend of one of my daughters, "made my mom cry." I'd say the soaring music and the beautiful scenes of space, nature and human emotions, typical of just about every IMAX documentary, played a role in those teary eyes. But, the work featured in the movie is pretty remarkable.
There's the story, for instance of a top Arizona engineer, who first got interested in engineering in high school. She was one of several Mexican immigrants on the team from Carl Hayden High School, which ended up beating MIT.
Or the young engineer who eschewed a high paying job to build bridges in third world countries. In one example in Haiti, she helped get a bridge built so children could walk to school safely. They had been crossing a river where some had died.
There's another female engineer, who had planned to become a movie star until she survived a devastating earthquake in her native Turkey. Today, she works to build buildings that keep people safe.
And there's another engineer, who used technology to figure out the surprising answer to how the Great Wall of China holds its shape.
As, you may notice, of the four featured engineers, three are women - a fact that one of my daughters, who is interested in becoming an engineer, appreciated. The movie also covers the importance of raising awareness about the things that engineers do so today's kids might consider it for their own career plans.
We all thoroughly enjoyed the movie, including my grade schooler and middle schooler. It's a great opportunity, especially for kids, to learn more about the profession and marvel at the great works of engineers. I recommend it for all ages, but especially young grade schoolers and up.
If you go, don't forget that Marbles has reduced its movie ticket prices for the summer. All documentaries are now $5.