Real Genius

"Extraordinary"

Real Genius Review


Ah, the '80s. It was the semi-golden decade of decadence and self-importance. It was the last time when what the average Joe likes determined what the movie studios made, not the other way around. Consequently, it was the last decade for really funny movies. In the 90s, if you wanted to make something side-splitting, you had to go Independent.

In the '80s, however, there are no shortage of movies that are just plain fun. From the Ghostbusters films to Ferris Bueller's Day Off, to the off-kilter dark comedy/horror April Fools Day, the 80s had no shortage of movies that made you laugh. It was the only time that comedies had scripts instead of actors that make up their own scripts, and, as a consequence, the movies of the '80s were actually funny.

Although it did not start the trend of the '80s towards being incredibly funny, Real Genius remains a film that retains its standing as a hilarious movie. Unlike '90s comedies, which get tiring after the first few times, Real Genius never gets old. Real Genius is a classic.

In Real Genius, Val Kilmer and Gabriel Jarrett star as two of the ten finest minds in the world. No, it wasn't a joke to cast Val Kilmer as a genius... this was before he killed every brain cell and allowed his agent to cast him in The Saint. Kilmer plays a relaxed, t-shirt wearing genius named Chris Knight. Jarrett plays an uptight, 15-year-old college freshman genius named Mitch Taylor. Knight and Taylor are working on a top-secret laser that is designed to assassinate any single human target from space... of course, they don't know that. They are being duped into this job by their professor, Jerry Hathaway (William Atherton). To imagine what a total schmuck Hathaway is, think of the principal in Ferris Bueller's Day Off and multiple the asshole-factor by ten.

The script is populated with one-liners, running jokes, and oddball relationships. The film is cute, eminently quoteable, and actually has a plot (the other major difference between 80s studio comedies and 90s studio comedies.). The actors surpass doing their jobs: the play their quirky roles to the maximum. From Kilmer actually being a good actor for once (his timing in this film is perfect), to the uptight RA, Kent (Prescott) to the student who lives in the steam tunnels (you have to see it to understand), to the ultra hyper genius, Jordan (Michelle Meyrink), everyone plays their part in making this a very funny movie.

The only bad thing about Real Genius is this: the film spends plenty of time trying to be something profound. This was a problem with films in general during the 80s, and it can be seen as a distinguishing mark of its era. However, because it spends so much time trying to be profound, it loses the opportunity for certain jokes along the way.

Other than that, Real Genius is a perfect comedy.

Pop secret!



Real Genius

Facts and Figures

Run time: 108 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 7th August 1985

Box Office Worldwide: $13M

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Production compaines: TriStar Pictures, Delphi III Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 74%
Fresh: 17 Rotten: 6

IMDB: 7.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Martha Coolidge

Producer:

Starring: as Chris Knight, as Mitch Taylor, as Jordan Cochran, as Prof. Jerry Hathaway, as Lazlo Hollyfeld, Patti D'Arbanville as Sherry Nugil, as Kent, as David Decker, as Maj. Carnagle, as Dr. Meredith, as Shuttle Pilot, as George, as Mrs. Taylor, as Mrs. Meredith, as Milton, as Fenton, as Susan Decker

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.