The Wednesday Review – Young Einstein (1988)
When people think of iconic Australian movies they will probably come up with films such as The Castle, Crocodile Dundee, maybe even Mad Max. All provided a unique view of differing aspects of Australian culture and identity.
However none of these movies, in my opinion, are nearly as Australian as ‘Young Einstein’. Many of you having just read that title will suddenly remember this movie from their childhoods long ago, It is a forgotten movie, not even available on DVD here as far as I know. Perhaps like you it was a staple of my childhood, its silliness a perfect mix to entertain a child’s mind.
So how does the movie stack up again as an adult when the veneer of ridiculous ideas, close to stupid liberties and questionable merit is analysed? Well actually pretty damn well.
Young Einstein is Yahoo Serious’ crackpot movie about a Tasmanian born Albert Einstein who discovers his formula for energy by splitting beer atoms to create bubbles in beer. He also invents rock and roll and surfing. Its hard to describe the movie without a certain pretentiousness coming about. A series of very un-Australian things supposedly done by an Aussie now? Absurd!
Absurd is right, it is completely and utterly absurdity from start to finish and not for a minute does it take itself seriously. There are relativity few out and out jokes within the film, relying mostly on crazy scenarios, mannerisms and often a complete departure from reality for its laughs but its all well done. I do however believe that you have to be Australian to really enjoy the humour. It is no surprise that the film bombed overseas whilst making millions of dollars locally.
One of the greatest things about this movie is that the soundtrack is quite simply amazing. Consisting of a near all Australian listing and having some of the most iconic Australian songs of all time makes the soundtrack almost better then the movie.
Can I recommend Young Einstein? Yes, nostalgia holds up in this particularly instance and I found it just as enjoyable now as I did as a kid. I found it a lot smarter a movie then it might immediately appear. Reccomended.
Three and a half bubbles in beer out of five.