Subscribers! Add a note to this movie and/or put it into one of your private movie lists.
Based on the true story of university professor and part-time inventor Robert Kearns' decades-long battle with the U.S. automobile industry, Flash of Genius tells the tale of one man whose fight to receive recognition for his ingenuity would come at a heavy price. But this determined engineer refused to be silenced, and he took on the corporate titans in a battle that nobody thought he could win.
Roger EbertFull Review Good "Flash of Genius" tells this story in faithful and often moving detail. If it has a handicap, it's that Kearns was not a colorful character, more of a very stubborn man with tunnel vision.
USA TodayFull Review Above Average As a story of dogged perseverance at the cost of a personal life, Flash of Genius is compelling stuff. On top of that, we all like to see a rousing tale of a little guy triumphing over a faceless corporate giant. While some scenes deliver, Flash of Genius suffers from an occasional lack of narrative tension.
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
The Kearns were a typical 1960s Detroit family, trying to live their version of the
American Dream. Local college professor Bob (GREG KINNEAR) married schoolteacher Phyllis (LAUREN
GRAHAM) and, by their mid-thirties, had six kids who
brought them a hectic but satisfying Midwestern existence.
When inveterate tinkerer Bob invents the intermittent windshield wiper—a device
that would eventually be used by every car in the world—he is not only proud and
thrilled, but the Kearns think they have struck gold. Working with family friend Gil
Previck (DERMOT MULRONEY), they develop the
revolutionary product and take it to market. But their aspirations are dashed after the
automotive giants who embraced Bob's device unceremoniously take his creation and
shun the man who imagined it.
Ignored, threatened and then buried in years of litigation, Bob is haunted by what
was done to his family and their future. He turns to attorneys, including Gregory Lawson
(ALAN ALDA), to help him fight the
seemingly impossible battle…but their approach and willingness to settle leaves Bob
with the realization he alone must pursue the justice he needs. He becomes a man
obsessed. His conviction is simple: his life's work—or for that matter, anyone's work—
should be acknowledged by those who stand to benefit. And while paying the toll for
refusing to compromise his dignity, this everyday David will try the unthinkable: to bring
Goliath to his knees.