Genius (2017– )
4 user 4 critic

Einstein: Chapter One 

The story of Albert Einstein, seen through glimpses of his twilight years and flashbacks to his time as a student in Munich and Zürich in the 1890s.


Ron Howard


Noah Pink (teleplay by), Noah Pink (story by) | 4 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Geoffrey Rush ... Albert Einstein
Johnny Flynn ... Young Albert Einstein
Samantha Colley ... Mileva Maric
Richard Topol ... Fritz Haber
Michael McElhatton ... Dr. Philipp Lenard
Emily Watson ... Elsa Einstein
Robert Lindsay ... Hermann Einstein
Shannon Tarbet ... Marie Winteler
Charity Wakefield ... Betty
Alistair Petrie ... Heinrich Weber
Vincent Kartheiser ... Raymond Geist
Claire Rushbrook ... Pauline Einstein
Nicholas Rowe ... Jost Winteler
Henry Goodman ... Walther Rathenau
Helen Monks ... Maja Einstein


As Antisemitism reaches a fever pitch in 1920s Germany, physicist Albert Einstein finds himself forced to choose between emigrating to the United States or staying in solidarity with his fellow academics. The struggle evokes memories of his days as a student at Zürich Polytechnic and his first encounter with Mileva Maric, the woman who would become his first wife. Written by Ajaysinh Jadeja

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis








Release Date:

25 April 2017 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Liberec, Czech Republic See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Did You Know?


Johnny Flynn, who plays the young Albert Einstein, was born on Albert Einstein's 104th birthday (March 14, 1983). See more »


In the opening scene in 1922, when Foreign Minister Rathenau was assassinated by Organisation Consul, his car is shown flying the black, white and red striped official's flag of the German Empire that ended in 1918. The same flag was used again from 1933 to 1935, but in 1922 it would have been one with the black, gold and red stripes of the Weimar Repiblic. See more »


Luitpold Math Teacher: Herr Einstein, are you still too busy contemplating the secrets of the cosmos to solve this equation?
Young Albert Einstein: Oh, no sir, I've already solved it.
Luitpold Math Teacher: Leave. Now.
Young Albert Einstein: On what offence?
Luitpold Math Teacher: Your mere presence spoils the respect of the class for me.
Young Albert Einstein: That is not an objective reason.
Luitpold Math Teacher: Out!
Young Albert Einstein: Natural log of constant multiplied by x equals natural log of one plus v squared. And since v equals y over x. That gives us the final function: x squared plus y squared minus c x cubed equals zero. And speaking truthfully sir, your ...
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References Metropolis (1927) See more »

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User Reviews

Episode 1
24 April 2017 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

Genius is the first scripted drama from National Geographic. It is also from the makers of the Oscar winning A Beautiful Mind.

The first episode is directed by Ron Howard whose opening shot is set in Berlin 1922. A Jewish businessman is shot and his car bombed, we then see a Jewish newspaper article in flames which leads to the next cut of the same Jewish newspaper article with Albert Einstein (Geoffrey Rush) copulating with his assistant Betty (Charity Wakefield.)

A drama about the renowned physicist is split into several time- lines. The older Einstein is played by Rush, celebrated and also reviled for his theories and religion. His more earthier wife, Elsa (Emily Watson) warns him of the rising tide of antisemitism in Germany. His lecture room is filled to brim and Howard uses further visual trickery to demonstrate his embryonic theories of time and relativity.

We also see the younger Albert in Munich 1894 played by Johnny Flynn. A brash know it all when it comes to physics and maths but not so about other subjects. His tutors despair of his insolence and his father about getting into trouble at college. Young Albert is in danger of not getting a degree and ends up studying in Switzerland where his ideas at least do not lead to threats of expulsion and also some flirtatious behaviour.

The film has good production values and lots of British actors doing 'ze German accents.' The script has its share of clunkiness and stereotypical characters. Albert's father is stern and does not quiet understand him. His mother is loving and cares more for him than his father.

A bravura performance from Rush as the older Albert but I am not sure I wish to spend ten episodes (with a second series already announced) learning about the life of Albert Einstein and see Rush being randy all the time.

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