Real Genius Reviews

  • Jun 13, 2019

    Pretty good 80s flick. Worth watching. On the 80s watch list.

    Pretty good 80s flick. Worth watching. On the 80s watch list.

  • May 04, 2019

    A Blobbo-favorite of 1985.

    A Blobbo-favorite of 1985.

  • Feb 13, 2019

    This is yet another classic comedy. I laughed a lot. The story was actually pretty good. You like most of the charecters from the start. It's so 1980's and that's a great thing. There are a couple scenes that were potentially vulgar but quickly cuts out before we see anything. OMG the ending LMAO. Jiffy pop will never be the same. If you haven't seen this whats wrong with you.

    This is yet another classic comedy. I laughed a lot. The story was actually pretty good. You like most of the charecters from the start. It's so 1980's and that's a great thing. There are a couple scenes that were potentially vulgar but quickly cuts out before we see anything. OMG the ending LMAO. Jiffy pop will never be the same. If you haven't seen this whats wrong with you.

  • Oct 26, 2018

    There are two main reasons that Real Genius works. First of all, it’s the overwhelming charm of Val Kilmer. He plays the role of Chris Knight with so much suave confidence that you instantly feel like you want to hang out with this guy. I’m not sure he totally sells the fact that the character is also a genius, but at least the fun-loving joyful presence is infectious. The other success in Real Genius is William Atherton as the slimy professor who is using his students. He is always superb at playing a conniving villain, and here he takes it to a new level. Threatening the protagonists to get what he wants and even manipulating government officials makes him underhanded, sneaky, and entirely self-serving. I’m sure there are other actors who could hit the right note with this performance, but Atherton seems like one of the best character actors for the job. On the flip side, I’m not as infatuated with Gabriel Jarret who plays the other protagonist, Mitch Taylor. He is a convincing nerd, but he was lacking something to draw me into the film. It took until we met Chris Knight for this story to take off, because I was so underwhelmed by Mitch. The journey of Mitch is one of those classic falsehoods that movies like to sell, where the key to succeeding in school is to loosen up and have some fun instead of becoming too obsessed with your studies. And of course they also have Robert Prescott in there presenting the counterpoint, because those who are too dedicated to their school work are insufferable know-it-alls, jerks, and brownnosers. It’s a frustrating narrative that I’ve seen many times before and I’m glad that culture has shifted a little so that geeks and nerds aren’t always seen as losers who must be fixed. The story in Real Genius is quite predictable, because it follows a familiar path. There is some fun to be had on this journey so it doesn’t bother me that I can see everything coming. It is an interesting idea to focus on a school for genius students where they are being used for military gain. I was a little confused by the fact that they interacted with a man who once had the same thing done to him, and yet they don’t see the dangerous applications of what they are building. I guess we’re supposed to think they’re too focused on how to do it to worry about why they are doing it. Most of the way through the movie has a natural flow, and that’s maintained by a number of montages. Real Genius does have a few weird moments that seemed out of place, but otherwise I was on board for the ride even if it wasn’t the most spectacular film I’ve seen from that era. I could certainly see this as a strong nostalgic favorite if I had watched it in the 80s when I was young.

    There are two main reasons that Real Genius works. First of all, it’s the overwhelming charm of Val Kilmer. He plays the role of Chris Knight with so much suave confidence that you instantly feel like you want to hang out with this guy. I’m not sure he totally sells the fact that the character is also a genius, but at least the fun-loving joyful presence is infectious. The other success in Real Genius is William Atherton as the slimy professor who is using his students. He is always superb at playing a conniving villain, and here he takes it to a new level. Threatening the protagonists to get what he wants and even manipulating government officials makes him underhanded, sneaky, and entirely self-serving. I’m sure there are other actors who could hit the right note with this performance, but Atherton seems like one of the best character actors for the job. On the flip side, I’m not as infatuated with Gabriel Jarret who plays the other protagonist, Mitch Taylor. He is a convincing nerd, but he was lacking something to draw me into the film. It took until we met Chris Knight for this story to take off, because I was so underwhelmed by Mitch. The journey of Mitch is one of those classic falsehoods that movies like to sell, where the key to succeeding in school is to loosen up and have some fun instead of becoming too obsessed with your studies. And of course they also have Robert Prescott in there presenting the counterpoint, because those who are too dedicated to their school work are insufferable know-it-alls, jerks, and brownnosers. It’s a frustrating narrative that I’ve seen many times before and I’m glad that culture has shifted a little so that geeks and nerds aren’t always seen as losers who must be fixed. The story in Real Genius is quite predictable, because it follows a familiar path. There is some fun to be had on this journey so it doesn’t bother me that I can see everything coming. It is an interesting idea to focus on a school for genius students where they are being used for military gain. I was a little confused by the fact that they interacted with a man who once had the same thing done to him, and yet they don’t see the dangerous applications of what they are building. I guess we’re supposed to think they’re too focused on how to do it to worry about why they are doing it. Most of the way through the movie has a natural flow, and that’s maintained by a number of montages. Real Genius does have a few weird moments that seemed out of place, but otherwise I was on board for the ride even if it wasn’t the most spectacular film I’ve seen from that era. I could certainly see this as a strong nostalgic favorite if I had watched it in the 80s when I was young.

  • Jul 25, 2018

    Great movie with a great soundtrack

    Great movie with a great soundtrack

  • Jesse O Super Reviewer
    Jul 15, 2018

    You know, 80s movies are kind of an anomaly. At least major 80s teen comedies. What I mean by that is even if most of these movies are incredibly shallow (I said most, not all mind you, before you get your pitchforks), they do a better job at cheering you up than, say, a lot of movies in this day and age. Whether it's the fashion, the music, the verbiage, there's just something very charming about 80s teen comedies that, honestly, I enjoy watching even if the movie might not necessarily be what I'd call good. That's, really, why I decided to watch this. I'm not that familiar with this movie, so I was expecting a silly, shallow movie that wasn't any good, but would find a way to cheer me up regardless with its 80sness. Color me surprised when I find out that, actually, this is a legitimately funny and clever movie that, because of comedy being the way it is today, holds up surprisingly well. I don't know how this film was regarded at the time, in relation to its humor, but dare I say that it was ahead of its time, perhaps? Maybe that's not really fair to say, because just because it shares similarities to some modern comedies does not mean that they had a great revelation that this was the way comedy was gonna move forward into the future. Regardless, I genuinely enjoyed this movie quite a bit. I suppose I need to go more in-depth, so here we go. The narrative starts with 15-year-old genius, Mitch, being sent to a science and engineering university in order to work on this chemical laser that the person who recruited him, Professor Hathaway, is working on trying to perfect. Hathaway, however, does not tell Mitch, or any of the other students working on the project, that they're actually working on a lethal weapon for the military. A weapon that can beam a laser at any target they want and kill them instantly within 15-seconds. Most of the movie, of course, however, is Mitch Taylor adjusting to campus life while being roomed with campus legend, Chris Knight, who's also a genius. Chris, however, is a clown. In fact, actually, when assessing Val Kilmer's performance in this movie, I was reminded of Ryan Reynolds. It's the same type of similar sarcastic, sardonic comedic performance that Reynolds has perfected. In fact, Ryan Reynolds in Van Wilder is, essentially, Val Kilmer in this movie. It's almost scary the similarities between the two. Not saying that Ryan ripped Val Kilmer off or something, but you can see that there was definitely a lot of inspiration drawn from Kilmer's performance. And, honestly, I can't say that I blame the guy, because Val Kilmer is great in this movie. I really do mean it. Kilmer has always been one of those guys that, very obviously, has a lot of talent, but, for some reason or another, he's never really clicked for one reason or another. I don't know if he had a reputation, which I have heard rumors of, or whatever. But he, while certainly having a very successful career, can't say to have reached the same heights as his...partner in Top Gun, Tom Cruise. And that's despite the fact that, objectively speaking, Val Kilmer is more naturally talented. But, in all honesty, Kilmer (when he's motivated, of course) he can knock it out of the park. This movie is proof of that, as is Top Secret and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. I guess that's about enough of Val Kilmer's greatness in this movie. As mentioned, the movie sees Mitch adjusting to campus lifestyle and his, general, disappointment with Chris being a complete goof and somehow who, really, doesn't work as hard as his intelligence suggests he might. We also have to deal with Hathaway being an asshole and rushing Chris and Mitch to finish the laser by a deadline, which is being forced on him by the military. One of the things that surprised me the most is how well-written this movie is. Perhaps not in terms of character development or narrative, I just mean the dialogue is quite good and there's plenty of jokes to be had here. For some reason, though, I don't feel that this is anything more than just a good movie. I think there's some moments between the second and third act when the film slows down. This happens to a lot of comedies before they pick it up again in the third act. There's also some silliness in the third act, like Mitch and Chris sneaking onto a military air base once they find out what Hathaway wants to use their work for. But, to me, everything else worked. You root for the heroes and you want Hathaway to get his comeuppance. It's all simple, but it works in execution. The cast itself is very strong all around. The music is, well, of the 80s and, therefore, it's good in setting the tone. And, most important of all, the movie is just quite entertaining. This review isn't as good as the movie is, but that should be expected. Having said all of that, and this one is shorter than normal, that's about it for this review. This is a fun movie and I would gladly recommend it. Of course, however, don't come in expecting The Godfather. It's a silly 80s comedies, adjust your standards accordingly.

    You know, 80s movies are kind of an anomaly. At least major 80s teen comedies. What I mean by that is even if most of these movies are incredibly shallow (I said most, not all mind you, before you get your pitchforks), they do a better job at cheering you up than, say, a lot of movies in this day and age. Whether it's the fashion, the music, the verbiage, there's just something very charming about 80s teen comedies that, honestly, I enjoy watching even if the movie might not necessarily be what I'd call good. That's, really, why I decided to watch this. I'm not that familiar with this movie, so I was expecting a silly, shallow movie that wasn't any good, but would find a way to cheer me up regardless with its 80sness. Color me surprised when I find out that, actually, this is a legitimately funny and clever movie that, because of comedy being the way it is today, holds up surprisingly well. I don't know how this film was regarded at the time, in relation to its humor, but dare I say that it was ahead of its time, perhaps? Maybe that's not really fair to say, because just because it shares similarities to some modern comedies does not mean that they had a great revelation that this was the way comedy was gonna move forward into the future. Regardless, I genuinely enjoyed this movie quite a bit. I suppose I need to go more in-depth, so here we go. The narrative starts with 15-year-old genius, Mitch, being sent to a science and engineering university in order to work on this chemical laser that the person who recruited him, Professor Hathaway, is working on trying to perfect. Hathaway, however, does not tell Mitch, or any of the other students working on the project, that they're actually working on a lethal weapon for the military. A weapon that can beam a laser at any target they want and kill them instantly within 15-seconds. Most of the movie, of course, however, is Mitch Taylor adjusting to campus life while being roomed with campus legend, Chris Knight, who's also a genius. Chris, however, is a clown. In fact, actually, when assessing Val Kilmer's performance in this movie, I was reminded of Ryan Reynolds. It's the same type of similar sarcastic, sardonic comedic performance that Reynolds has perfected. In fact, Ryan Reynolds in Van Wilder is, essentially, Val Kilmer in this movie. It's almost scary the similarities between the two. Not saying that Ryan ripped Val Kilmer off or something, but you can see that there was definitely a lot of inspiration drawn from Kilmer's performance. And, honestly, I can't say that I blame the guy, because Val Kilmer is great in this movie. I really do mean it. Kilmer has always been one of those guys that, very obviously, has a lot of talent, but, for some reason or another, he's never really clicked for one reason or another. I don't know if he had a reputation, which I have heard rumors of, or whatever. But he, while certainly having a very successful career, can't say to have reached the same heights as his...partner in Top Gun, Tom Cruise. And that's despite the fact that, objectively speaking, Val Kilmer is more naturally talented. But, in all honesty, Kilmer (when he's motivated, of course) he can knock it out of the park. This movie is proof of that, as is Top Secret and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. I guess that's about enough of Val Kilmer's greatness in this movie. As mentioned, the movie sees Mitch adjusting to campus lifestyle and his, general, disappointment with Chris being a complete goof and somehow who, really, doesn't work as hard as his intelligence suggests he might. We also have to deal with Hathaway being an asshole and rushing Chris and Mitch to finish the laser by a deadline, which is being forced on him by the military. One of the things that surprised me the most is how well-written this movie is. Perhaps not in terms of character development or narrative, I just mean the dialogue is quite good and there's plenty of jokes to be had here. For some reason, though, I don't feel that this is anything more than just a good movie. I think there's some moments between the second and third act when the film slows down. This happens to a lot of comedies before they pick it up again in the third act. There's also some silliness in the third act, like Mitch and Chris sneaking onto a military air base once they find out what Hathaway wants to use their work for. But, to me, everything else worked. You root for the heroes and you want Hathaway to get his comeuppance. It's all simple, but it works in execution. The cast itself is very strong all around. The music is, well, of the 80s and, therefore, it's good in setting the tone. And, most important of all, the movie is just quite entertaining. This review isn't as good as the movie is, but that should be expected. Having said all of that, and this one is shorter than normal, that's about it for this review. This is a fun movie and I would gladly recommend it. Of course, however, don't come in expecting The Godfather. It's a silly 80s comedies, adjust your standards accordingly.

  • Jul 14, 2018

    Classic in every sense.

    Classic in every sense.

  • Jul 04, 2018

    Lazlo got up, left the closet, ditched Sherry, and became a Hollywood heroin addict. A true coalmine car-to-skid row tale of the American Dream. Oh, and Kent... stop playing with yourself.

    Lazlo got up, left the closet, ditched Sherry, and became a Hollywood heroin addict. A true coalmine car-to-skid row tale of the American Dream. Oh, and Kent... stop playing with yourself.

  • Jan 20, 2018

    Unbelievable and ridiculous but silly goofy and entertaining. A meh college screwball comedy. Very 80's. A bit ADHD in pacing. Kilmer was fun to watch.

    Unbelievable and ridiculous but silly goofy and entertaining. A meh college screwball comedy. Very 80's. A bit ADHD in pacing. Kilmer was fun to watch.

  • Aug 25, 2017

    Real Genius may have seemed really rad back in the 80s, but it has not aged well. It feels like they pointed the camera at Val Kilmer and said "Go crazy. Just do and say whatever you want. It'll be great." and then tried to build a story around his manic performance. It's not funny, it's not clever and it doesn't get a passing grade from me.

    Real Genius may have seemed really rad back in the 80s, but it has not aged well. It feels like they pointed the camera at Val Kilmer and said "Go crazy. Just do and say whatever you want. It'll be great." and then tried to build a story around his manic performance. It's not funny, it's not clever and it doesn't get a passing grade from me.