I'm thinking this film must have been an influence on "The Big Bang Theory," telling the comic misadventures of a bunch of young scientists. Gabriel Jarret plays a 15 year old genius who enters college early to work on a high tech experiment at a Caltech-like university. He gets to room with a legendary fellow student genius, Val Kilmer, in my favorite role of his (yes, even better than Doc Holliday), who ends up being a a goofball and not the serious minded scientist Jarret was expecting. But what makes this film so good are many of the same things that are charming about "The Big Bang Theory;" a group of smart outsiders who find fellowship within their own small group and more importantly it's a group of very likable characters. I've always felt "Real Genius" was my favorite non-John Hughes 80s Teen film. Directed by Martha Coolidge, who's films are always marked by well developed characters (i.e. "Rambling Rose" or even "Valley Girl"), draws some very likable, well defined characters here, particularly, Jarrett, Kilmer and Jarrett's love interest Jordan, played by Michelle Meyrink. Even the villain of the film, William Atherton, strikes the perfect tone as a credible antagonist, but not an over the top sneering Mr. Rooney from Ferris Bueller or the ridiculous frat boys in "Revenge of the Nerds." Jon Gries, Patti D'Arbanville and Ed Lauter also appear in the film. Coolidge also give a bit part to the gorgeous and sadly underused Deborah Foreman, who starred in "Valley Girl" with Meyrink. Thomas Newman provides one of his very catchy 80s scores and then top it off with a memorable use of Tears for Fears at the end of the film, all adds up to this being one of the best teen comedies of the 1980s.