Seeing people who were important in history being played by actors in films is always enjoyable, especially when you can identify them. These people often range from famous actors to musicians to politicians to timeless names that are part of human history. Every so often, these people are actually famous inventors, some of whom are easier to recognize then others. Check out a few movies where you can see these famous inventors.
David Bowie as Nikola Tesla,”The Prestige”
This great Christopher Nolan film that everyone tends to forget about features David Bowie playing Nikola Tesla in an important role, at least in regards to the plot of the film. Bowie is always great in every film he is in and he’s perfectly bizarre and eccentric here. You should hear Tesla’s name more soon, as a new line of electric sports cars is named after him.
Greg Kinnear as Robert Kearns, “Flash of Genius”
Kinnear plays Robert Kearns in this biopic about his life. The movie follows how Kearns invented the windshield wiper only to have the idea stolen by Ford Motor Company. He then took the company to court in a battle and proves that you can’t push around the little guy. This is one of best modern-day inventor tales ever made, as there are so many of these types of films out there.
Claire Danes as Temple Grandin, “Temple Grandin“
Claire Danes played Temple Grandin, a woman who helped to change how people saw and thought about autism in the 20th Century. While she is best known for her medical research and work as an autism advocate, she also was an inventor who created the squeeze machine, a device meant to help calm hypersensitive people.
Walter Matthau as Albert Einstein, “I.Q.”
This romantic comedy included Albert Einstein as a main character playing the uncle of a Princeton doctoral candidate who falls in love with a mechanic (Meg Ryan and Tim Robbins, in these roles). Not only is this historically inaccurate, but the film was generally considered to be almost unwatchable. However, Walter Matthau as Einstein is a treat.
Hugh Dancy as Mortimer Granville, “Hysteria”
A little known but fascinating and funny inventor story follows Mortimer Granville, the man who invented the vibrator for the “sake of medical science.” Not only will this film entertain you, but it will also teach you about how sometimes great inventions, which the vibrator most certainly is, occur entirely by accident.
Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg, “The Social Network”
Perhaps the most well-known modern inventor film is “The Social Network,” though you may not think about the film that way. However, Zuckerberg created Facebook which is arguably the invention which has changed the way we live the most in recent years, for better or worse.