Little Man Tate (1991)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  1 November 1991 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 10,953 users  
Reviews: 36 user | 24 critic

Dede is a sole parent trying to bring up her son Fred. When it is discovered that Fred is a genius, she is determined to ensure that Fred has all the opportunities that he needs, and that ... See full summary »



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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Garth Emmerick (as David Pierce)
Alex Lee ...
Matt Montini
Nathan Lee ...
Matt's Teammate
Miss Nimvel
Danitra Vance ...
Clinic Doctor
Richard Fredette ...
Winston F. Buckner
Grierson Institute Teacher


Dede is a sole parent trying to bring up her son Fred. When it is discovered that Fred is a genius, she is determined to ensure that Fred has all the opportunities that he needs, and that he is not taken advantage of by people who forget that his extremely powerful intellect is harboured in the body and emotions of a child. Written by Murray Chapman <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It's not what he knows. It's what he understands.




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

1 November 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mentes que brillan  »

Box Office


$10,000,000 (estimated)


$25,010,896 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jodie Foster asked David Hyde Pierce to appear in the film after remembering him from college. They both attended Yale University. See more »


There are several errors in simple mathematics in the movie: Firstly, Damon "The Mathemagician" Wells correctly states that there are 25 228 800 minutes in 48 years (but 25,246,080 minutes if one counts the 12 leap-days that would occur in any span of 48 years that doesn't include a century year - only century years evenly divisible by 400, like 2000 but not 1900, are leap years), then says that this is 151 368 000 seconds. This is clearly wrong as 25 228 800 x 60 is 1 513 728 000 (more than 10 times as much). Furthermore, Fred says that the cube root of 3 796 466 is 156 although 156*156*156 is 3 796 416. See more »


[first lines]
Fred Tate: It's funny, cause I *think* I can even remember being born. For the first two weeks of my life I didn't even have a name. Dede couldn't make up her mind. She finally decided on Fred. She said that she had never heard of a little kid named Fred before.
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Referenced in Gilmore Girls: I'm OK, You're OK (2006) See more »


Mozart's Piana Quartet In E Flat Major, KV493
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as Mozart)
Performed by Jacques Rouvier/Mozart String Trio
Courtesy of Denon/Nippon Columbia Co., Ltd.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
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User Reviews

Ultimately dissatisfying

Explores the difficulties faced by a 7 year old genius, and his relationship on the one hand with his mother, who provides love but no intellectual stimulus, and his teacher, who provides lessons in abundance but without emotional support. A bit laboured and contrived, both mother and teacher come across as caricatures. It highlights some potentially interesting issues, which are skimmed over in the ending, which is as trite as they come. The little kid is good, though.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Terrible Yoda101382
Adam Hann-Byrd was ugly in this film kedem524
What is the point? thirsch-2
Fred's nickname for his mother TheLastUnicorn
The music he plays in the piano on the interview whith Jane Grierson??? vovosafalda
Song eddy is playing Gunfighter2009
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