The Professor and the Madman

Watch The Professor and the Madman

"The incredible true story that defined our world."
  • NR
  • 2019
  • 2 hr 4 min
  • 7.2  (50,541)
  • 27

The Professor and the Madman is a 2019 historical biographical drama film directed by Farhad Safinia and starring Mel Gibson, Sean Penn, and Eddie Marsan. The movie is based on the book The Surgeon of Crowthorne by Simon Winchester. The film tells the story of the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary, one of the most important and comprehensive dictionaries of the English language. The project began in the mid-19th century and lasted for over seven decades, with the help of thousands of volunteers who contributed to the dictionary's extensive collection of words and definitions.

At the heart of the film are two men, Professor James Murray (Mel Gibson) and Dr. William Minor (Sean Penn). Murray is tasked with overseeing the creation of the dictionary, and he enlists the help of volunteers from all walks of life. Meanwhile, Dr. Minor is a former army surgeon and one of the most prolific contributors to the dictionary. However, Murray is unaware that Minor is also a patient at Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum, where he is being treated for paranoid delusions and hallucinations.

As Murray and Minor work together on the dictionary, they develop a close friendship, despite the distance between them. Their unlikely collaboration is made all the more remarkable by their shared love of language, which they use as a means of expressing their innermost thoughts and feelings.

The film is skillfully directed, with an engaging script that captures the beauty and complexity of the English language. The cinematography is also first-rate, capturing the awe-inspiring beauty of the Oxford campus and the richness of the dictionary's many pages.

As the film progresses, it becomes clear that both Murray and Minor are deeply flawed individuals, struggling with their own personal demons. Murray is haunted by the loss of his wife and the guilt of his past mistakes, while Minor is plagued by the traumatic memories of his time in the army and the horrors he witnessed.

Despite these challenges, the two men persevere, driven by their love of language and their commitment to the Oxford English Dictionary. Along the way, they are forced to confront their own prejudices and biases, as they grapple with the many nuances and complexities of English language and culture.

The performances of Mel Gibson and Sean Penn are both masterful, with Gibson bringing a quiet intensity to his portrayal of Murray, while Penn imbues Minor with a sense of pathos and desperation that is both heart-wrenching and deeply affecting. Eddie Marsan also delivers a standout performance as the dictionary's chief editor, Dr. Richard Chenevix Trench, bringing a sense of gravitas and intellect to his role that perfectly complements the film's exploration of language and meaning.

Ultimately, The Professor and the Madman is a moving and thought-provoking film that delves deep into the history and beauty of the English language. It is a film that will appeal to anyone with a love of words and the power of language, as well as those who are interested in the rich history and culture of the English-speaking world. With its expert direction, outstanding performances, and engaging script, it is a film that is sure to captivate audiences of all ages and backgrounds.

The Professor and the Madman is a 2019 history movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 4 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2 and a MetaScore of 27.

The Professor and the Madman
Where to Watch The Professor and the Madman
The Professor and the Madman is available to watch free on Tubi TV and Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Netflix, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Professor and the Madman for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    2 hr 4 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (50,541)
  • Metascore