An Indie that uses the power of dialogue— Emmett in “Boy Genius” is easily recognized as that advanced kid from school we all loved to hate. C’mon, you remember one. The one shorter than you but still talking over your head. No matter what age at some point you’ve been around a know-it-all.
But yeah, high school. Who had a calm four years of high school? Take a poll. I dare not one will say life was afloat and care-free. So it’s very smart for Indie filmmakers Vicky Wight (The Lost Husband, The Volunteer) and Bridget Stokes (Picked Up, Herman and Shelly) to capitalize on the controversial world teens suffer in and plug it with innocence.
In a coming-of-age story, our boy Emmett (re-titled Boy Genius) cannot help his over-active, very vivid, photographic mind. And a few daydreams with Emmett connects us to what it was like to be a confused but happy child.
He’s a child among “grown-ups.” You can assume the school wants to exploit him, sure. But the mystery that follows is unexpected and is how you stay interested in the walks through the theme… which *is* about discovering who you are through your own backstory. And it’s about embracing failure,
This film is super clean, a little comical, and a little dark. For the love of Indies, it’s greatness and in my opinion successful. It’s really for kids though; it’s for youth in the nine- to twelve-year-old age range if I had to group it.
Applause for Rita Wilson (Jingle All the Way, Sleepless in Seattle) who really carries the most important conversations and sprinkles scenes with interesting charms. And to our endearing lovable Miles Brown (Blackish) for sustaining lengthy, intellectual, if not somewhat pedantic, monologues on almost every single page of the script.
I would say, put this one in your school locker until you can catch this on video.