Watch HairBrained

"This is Eli Pettifog. He's got a score to settle, and it's going to get hairy."
  • PG-13
  • 2014
  • 5.3  (2,324)
  • 48

HairBrained is a heartwarming comedy-drama directed by Billy Kent that revolves around a socially-awkward genius named Eli Pettifog. The movie, released in 2013, stars Alex Wolff as Eli, alongside Parker Posey as Dr. Eleanor Sherman and Brendan Fraser as Leo Searly. The film features a stellar cast and crew who skillfully bring to life a relatable and entertaining story about fitting in and finding oneself.

The plot centers around Eli, a child prodigy who has been homeschooled for his entire life by his eccentric mother. As he approaches college age, Eli decides to apply to Harvard University, with hopes of finding a like-minded intellectual community. However, his dreams are crushed when he is rejected from Harvard and all other Ivy League colleges.

Feeling lost and alone, Eli decides to enroll in Whittman College, a small liberal arts school in the middle of nowhere. There, he meets Leo Searly, a middle-aged gambler who has lost everything and returned to school to fulfill a lifelong dream of obtaining a degree. Leo takes Eli under his wing, and together they form an unlikely friendship that changes both of their lives.

Initially, Eli struggles to fit in with his classmates, who are more interested in partying and socializing than in studying. However, he eventually finds a group of outsiders like himself, including his crush, Shauna (played by Julia Garner), and her roommate, the free-spirited Bianca (played by Elisabeth Hower). These misfits band together to form a team to compete in the Collegiate Mastermind competition, a televised trivia game show where the winning team receives a $100,000 prize.

Eli, as the team captain, faces the challenge of leading his quirky team to victory over a group of confident and competitive rivals. Meanwhile, Leo's own gambling debts catch up with him, threatening to derail both his and Eli's dreams. As the competition heats up, and the stakes get higher, Eli and Leo must navigate their own personal struggles while supporting each other and their team.

Throughout the movie, the cast delivers charming performances, full of quirky humor and genuine emotion. Alex Wolff shines as Eli, portraying him as sympathetic and relatable, despite his peculiarities. Parker Posey brings a depth of humanity to her role as Dr. Sherman, a psychology professor who takes Eli under her wing. Brendan Fraser steals the show as Leo, delivering a nuanced performance that mixes humor and pathos.

Director Billy Kent infuses the film with a whimsical, indie spirit that is both endearing and poignant. The screenplay, written by Sarah Birdsall and Adam Wierzbianski, is packed with clever wordplay and pop culture references that add to the film's quirky charm.

Overall, HairBrained is a delightful coming-of-age story that will leave you smiling and cheering for the underdog. It's a feel-good movie that reminds us of the importance of finding our tribe and pursuing our dreams, no matter how unconventional they may be. Fans of quirky comedies like Little Miss Sunshine and Juno are sure to fall in love with this charming gem of a film.

HairBrained is a 2014 comedy. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.3 and a MetaScore of 48.

Where to Watch HairBrained
HairBrained is available to watch free on Vudu Free. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent HairBrained for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
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  • MPAA Rating
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  • IMDB Rating
    5.3  (2,324)
  • Metascore