Film / Baby Geniuses

Baby Geniuses is a 1999 action/comedy film directed by Bob Clark and starring Kathleen Turner and Christopher Lloyd.

Dr. Elena Kinder (Turner), CEO of the Babyco corporation, has formulated a method of child rearing (the Kinder method) meant to produce exceptionally intelligent children. To demonstrate its superiority, she arranged for a pair of identical twin boys to be born to a surrogate mother. One of these twins, Whit, was adopted by Dr. Kinder's niece, Robin (Kim Cattrall), and raised as a normal child. The other, Sylvester (nicknamed Sly), was raised in a habitat in Babyco's secret lab, under the guidance of the Kinder method, along with a few other babies. The movie also establishes that babies have their own language and know the secrets of the universe, both of which are forgotten when they "cross over" at age 2. Both Dr. Kinder and Robin's husband Dan (Ally McBeal star Peter MacNicol) are researching infant pre-language.

Sly wants to escape the lab, and eventually succeeds, making his way to a nearby mall. Dr. Kinder quickly sends out some of her subordinates (referred to by the babies as her "goons") to find and retrieve him. The next day, however, Whit is taken to the mall, and is accidentally captured and taken to the lab in Sly's place, while Sly is taken back to Robin's house.

At first, Dr. Kinder is horrified when she discovers that she has Whit, not Sly, but then she decides it will be beneficial to her plan, and sends more goons to bring Sly back to the lab too. Whit and Sly organize the babies at the lab and Dan and Robin's day care to stop Dr. Kinder's plan.

The film was critically panned; it was ranked by leading film critic Roger Ebert as one of his most hated movies. However, despite being savaged on all sides by critics, it made about triple its budget. It was followed by a sequel, SuperBabies: Baby Geniuses 2, which starred Jon Voight, in 2004. As of June 2015 resides in the top twenty of the Internet Movie Database's Bottom 100 list (the original used to be on the list as well, but has since fallen off). And even though neither of the original films were extremely successful, Clark planned a third movie, which has been released as a Direct-to-Video movie titled Baby Geniuses and the Mystery of the Crown Jewels (which was originally going to be a TV show called Baby Geniuses: Baby Squad Investigators), but since he died in 2007, a new director had to come in. A fourth movie has been released too, and a fifth soon followed.

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