Directed by Fredi M. Murer
Sony Pictures Classics Opens June 29
Genius weighs heavily on a child prodigy who longs to be "normal" in this charming Swiss import from veteran director Fredi M. Murer. Kicked out of kindergarten for being too smart, Vitus is both a brilliant mathematician and a musical virtuosobut he is still a child emotionally, something his well-intentioned parents fail to see. Only his beloved grandfather (Bruno Ganz) allows him to be an ordinary, mischievous boy, and Vitus increasingly seeks refuge with him. Tired of being exceptional, Vitus plots a way out of his dilemma. Blissfully devoid of both sentimentality and melodrama, the story takes a few fantastical turns toward the end that dampen the realism but serve the film's larger message. Impeccably acted, Vitus rests most squarely on the shoulders of two superb, young first-time performers: Fabrizio Borsani, who plays the yonger Vitus, and Teo Gheorghiu, a real-life piano prodigy, who plays Vitus at 12.