Box art for Father of Invention

Father of Invention


Robert Axle (Kevin Spacey), an eccentric inventor turned egomaniacal infomercial guru, loses it all when one of his inventions maims thousands of customers. After 8 years in prison, Axle is ready to redeem his billion-dollar empire.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 13
1 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
2 out of 5
3 out of 5
Positive messages
1 out of 5
Positive role models
1 out of 5
2 out of 5
1 out of 5

Awful Kevin Spacey comedy has strong language, no laughs.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this independent comedy follows Kevin Spacey as a disgraced inventor of infomercial goods. There's nothing particularly compelling in the plot to attract younger audiences, although some teens might be interested in seeing MTV star Johnny Knoxville or Joe Jonas' ex Camilla Belle. There are some mature themes in the movie -- about fraud, parent-child relationships, money squandering -- but the sexuality is limited to a couple of kisses and references to lesbian sex and second husbands, and the language is standard PG-13 fare like "a--hole" and "s--t." There aren't too many life lessons to be learned, but on the bright side viewers will be very unlikely to buy anything "as seen on TV" in the near future.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about how consumerism is depicted in the movie. Do audiences really need the items Axle was creating? How does he convince them to buy the stuff? Do we do that in our own lives as shoppers?
  • What is the movie's message about balancing work and family? How did Axle's first try at success affect his relationship with his daughter? How does he change after his release from prison?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Audience Reviews

1 star

Father of Invention is a deeply flawed, weird, and an overall mess of a movie. The writing is horrendous, having no idea what its(TM) trying to be. The satire is childish and silly, the comedy is flat and bland, as is most of the acting (save Spacey, who tries, but can(TM)t rise above the material. The film has no sense of direction or purpose, it(TM)s just a weird blend of poorly executed nonsense.

- fb704730572, Saturday, October 29, 2011