Flash Of Genius

YEAR: 2008

WRITER: Philip Railsback & John Seabrook (article)

DIRECTOR: Marc Abraham

BUDGET: $20 million (estimated)

GROSS: $3,744,790


if one of the most powerful companies in the world stole your invention, would you fight? if your own friends and lawyers were telling you that it would be too hard, would you fight? if after years of fighting the company offered you more money then you could imagine to settle the case but refused to provide any recognition of what they did, would you fight?

no matter what you might be saying to yourself right now - it isn't as easy to say yes to all those questions as you might think. but, there are people that can, and do, say yes and bob kearns was one of them. Flash Of Genius tells the true story of kearns, the man who invented the intermittent windshield wiper and his long battle with Ford after they stole his invention and refused to admit it.

sure, i am a bit of a sucker for a david vs. goliath story, but aren't we all? it is at once so frustrating and makes me so angry to see david used and cheated by goliath - but that moment when justice finally wins out is truly uplifting in its ability to make you believe - if just for a moment - that truth can prevail and that right matters.

then the movie ends and once again we realize that all us davids don't really have much actual power to effect change and that our leaders, corporations and the wealthiest 5 percent (who own more wealth than the bottom 95%) are all really just working in their own interests and that even the "good" ones have a hard time because of how the system is set up (that's my apathy/cynicism fighting my want-to-believe/i can make a difference).

greg kinnear is a really under appreciated actor and this film is another good performance to add to his resume (Nurse Betty, As Good As It Gets, Auto Focus, Little Miss Sunshine...). There aren't really any surprises in Flash Of Genius. with this film you know what you are getting into and that is what you get. But you get it done well and sometimes that is exactly what you want.