Inspired by real events, Dark Matter tells the story of Liu Xing (Liu Ye), a brilliant Chinese astronomy student at an American university, whose single ambition is to solve the mystery of dark matter, an unseen substance that shapes the universe. Liu Xing’s bold theories bring him in conflict with his charismatic mentor, Jacob Reiser (Aidan Quinn). Helping him adapt to American life, but unable to protect him from academic politics, is Joanna (Meryl Streep), a patron of the university with a passion for Chinese culture. Despite her best intentions, Liu Xing pursues his dream with tragic consequences.
Dark Matter won the Alfred P. Sloan Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, and was chosen for Lincoln Center’s Film Comment Selects series. The New York Times called it “a movie of ideas that does an exemplary job of translating scientific speculation into layman’s language,” and TV Guide called it a “hypnotic, culturally pertinent drama.”