Flash of Genius Reviews

Top Critic
November 10, 2008
If it doesn't rise to the level of It's a Wonderful Life, it's because Marc Abrams is no Frank Capra. And after all, this isn't about angels, it's about windshield wipers.
Top Critic
Ben Lyons
At the Movies
November 10, 2008
Nothing too special here.
Top Critic
Ben Mankiewicz
At the Movies
November 10, 2008
There is depth, there is complexity, there is authenticity to this character.
Top Critic
Reece Pendleton
Chicago Reader
October 10, 2008
Seriously undermined by the skeletal script, which barely develops the characters and unintentionally raises more questions about Kearns's quixotic battle than it answers.
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
October 8, 2008
Too much technical information about circuit boards, Motorola transistors and U.S. patent laws eventually takes up more screen time than Kearns' sympathetic story, leaving the viewer restless and bored.
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
October 3, 2008
In the end, Flash of Genius abandons its most interesting story line - Kearns v. Kearns - for a reliance on formula.
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
October 3, 2008
While some scenes deliver, Flash of Genius suffers from an occasional lack of narrative tension.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Linda Barnard
Toronto Star
October 3, 2008
The notion that a car part holds all the beauty and inspiration of a great piece of art is what makes Flash of Genius so watchable.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
October 3, 2008
We might be talking about windshield wipers instead of industry pollution in Flash of Genius, but somehow justice seems more dear in this odd movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Hartlaub
San Francisco Chronicle
October 3, 2008
"Flash of Genius" isn't that good, but it's an enjoyable way to start the Oscar season.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
October 3, 2008
We have seen this kind of tale before, and director Marc Abraham is unable to convince us that we want to see it again.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
October 3, 2008
Although it's competently made... Flash of Genius contains no spark of life at all.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
October 3, 2008
The flaws of Flash of Genius are worth putting up with for Kinnear's committed performance...
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Robert Wilonsky
L.A. Weekly
October 3, 2008
The big-screen version of inventor Robert Kearns' legal battles with Ford and Chrysler... is about as exciting as Kearns' Wikipedia entry.
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
October 3, 2008
This is an inspirational melodrama derailed by the low stakes of the subject and the flaws of its hero.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
October 3, 2008
The product is concept, not execution, and the delivery techniques bear standard Hollywood patents.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
October 3, 2008
The film stumbles at times... but it's essentially solid storytelling.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
October 3, 2008
The film's sedate pace and ungainly structure... throw its biggest shortcoming into the spotlight. It lacks a clear villain.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Mark Olsen
Chicago Tribune
October 3, 2008
...It wants so desperately to be a Hollywood-style story of the little guy triumphing over the big guy that it races past much of the subtlety of Kearns' story...
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Christopher Kelly
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
October 3, 2008
...The movie seems to have been crafted on an assembly line that specializes in inspirational tales of ordinary Davids triumphing over merciless Goliaths.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
October 3, 2008
If only the movie were more than intermittently interesting.
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
October 3, 2008
...The problem with Flash of Genius isn't that the subject is dull but that the movie is.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
October 3, 2008
There's a fine line between standing up for yourself and selfishness, and Flash of Genius drives right over it.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
October 3, 2008
A doggedly workmanlike variation of an old story: the lone crusader doing battle with the big bad establishment.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
October 2, 2008
A kamikaze flight of a movie that presents itself like a weighty Oscar contender. If there were a category for Best Unintentional Self-Parody, it would be a shoo-in.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
October 2, 2008
Flash of Genius has its corn, its conflation, its composite characters. But Kinnear does what he's done in the past: You underestimate the guy's acting chops, and suddenly, strikingly, he floors you.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Tasha Robinson
AV Club
October 2, 2008
Flash Of Genius has all the pleasures of an underdog film and none of the guilt of being pandered, patronized, and fed a feel-good moral.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
October 2, 2008
Kinnear takes the star spot in Flash of Genius and rides it to glory.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Rafer Guzman
Newsday
October 2, 2008
This film rises slightly above convention thanks to Kinnear's strong performance as its not entirely likable hero.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
October 2, 2008
Flash of Genius tells this story in faithful and often moving detail.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
October 2, 2008
Kinnear captures both the distracted-genius absentmindedness of a man inspired and the crumbling psyche of a man possessed. It's easily Kinnear's best performance in years, maybe ever.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Hank Sartin
Time Out
October 1, 2008
Kinnear, a generally underappreciated actor, holds the picture together almost by force of will.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Variety
September 4, 2008
Very small potatoes in the cinematic annals of inspiring little-guy-fights-the-system melodramas, to the point that it's a wonder it was thought to be strong bigscreen material.