7.0/10
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126 user 49 critic

Real Genius (1985)

Teenage geniuses deal with their abilities while developing a high-powered laser for a university project. When their professor intends to turn their work into a military weapon, they decide to ruin his plans.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
4,431 ( 19)

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From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mitch Taylor (as Gabe Jarret)
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Lazlo Hollyfeld (as Jonathan Gries)
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Sherry Nugil
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Shuttle Pilot
Daniel Ades ...
Laser Ray Victim
Andres Aybar ...
Bartender
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Major Carnagle
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David Decker
Charles Shull ...
Air Force General
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George
Charles Parks ...
Larry
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Boy at Science Fair
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Storyline

Mitch Taylor is one of the youngest students ever accepted to a university known for its programs for geniuses. He partners up with his roommate, science club legend Chris Knight, on a project to develop a high-powered laser. Together with their hyperkinetic friends, they employ their intellects in the pursuit of bigger blasts, practical jokes, and a deeper understanding of what real genius means. When they find out that their professor intends to turn their work over to the military for use as a weapon, they decide to get even. Written by Lordship <lordship@juno.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Who ELSE can turn lasers into light shows, aircraft into armchairs, and high-tech into hijinks? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 August 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Academia de genios  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Gross:

$13,000,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During a crash course in laser technology, the cast and crew was dazzled by a demonstration of the dye laser as it darted through the colors of the spectrum. But cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond was troubled. "The naked eye can see the beam coming toward it," he explains. "But it's almost invisible to the camera when it's going away. "We went through countless experiments before we learned to 'bounce' the beam and to fill the lab set with smoke, which 'scattered' the light and gave it definition. "Otherwise, we would have had a special effect so special, no one would have seen it." See more »

Goofs

When Hathaway first goes into the laser lab and exchanges conversation with Kent and the others, you can see the shadow of the overhead mic swinging back and forth. The shadow appears faintly on the far wall. See more »

Quotes

Chris Knight: This? This is ice. This is what happens to water when it gets too cold. This? This is Kent. This is what happens to people when they get too sexually frustrated.
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Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Troll 2 (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

You Took Advantage of Me
Written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
Performed by Carmen McRae
Courtesy of MCA Records
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User Reviews

Bright examination of youth and intelligence
8 January 1999 | by (Fargo, North Dakota) – See all my reviews

It is unfortunate that Val Kilmer so quickly "graduated" from the realm of youth oriented roles, as his work in Real Genius is by far the most enjoyable to watch. Kilmer proves adept at excellent comic timing, and he is given a motherlode of razor-sharp one-liners to fire off in every scene (I speculate that writer Pat Proft enjoyed watching The Marx Brothers in his formative years). Chief drawback of this film is the hammy, sneering villain played by Atherton -- as the old saying goes, just give him a mustache to twirl. But if you happened to see the film as a young person, the above-mentioned won't get in the way of your fond memories. I sure know that every time I see that slow-motion romp through the popcorn and hear Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World," ramp up on the soundtrack, my cynicism just melts away.


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