November 26, 1997 0 By Fans
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Still of Robin Williams in Flubber


An absent-minded professor discovers "flubber," a rubber-like super-bouncy substance.

Release Year: 1997

Rating: 4.7/10 (26,796 voted)

Critic's Score: 37/100

Les Mayfield

Stars: Robin Williams, Marcia Gay Harden, Christopher McDonald

Professor Phillip Brainard, an absent minded professor, works with his assistant Weebo, trying to create a substance that's a new source of energy and that will save Medfield College where his sweetheart Sara is the president. He has missed his wedding twice, and on the afternoon of his third wedding, Professor Brainard creates flubber, which allows objects to fly through the air. It looks like rubber, so he calls it flubber. This film is based on the 1961 Disney classic, "The Absent-Minded Professor.

Writers: Samuel W. Taylor, John Hughes


Robin Williams

Professor Philip Brainard

Marcia Gay Harden

Dr. Sara Jean Reynolds

Christopher McDonald

Wilson Croft

Raymond J. Barry

Chester Hoenicker

(as Raymond Barry)

Clancy Brown


Ted Levine


Wil Wheaton

Bennett Hoenicker

Edie McClurg

Martha George

Jodi Benson



Leslie Stefanson


Malcolm Brownson


Benjamin Brock

Window Boy

Dakin Matthews


Zack Zeigler

Teenage Boy

Sam Lloyd

Coach Willy Barker

(as Samuel Lloyd)

The stuff dreams are made of.

Release Date: 26 November 1997

Filming Locations: Alameda, California, USA

Opening Weekend: $35,892,031
(30 November 1997)
(2641 Screens)

Gross: $92,969,824
(26 April 1998)

Technical Specs


(DVD edition)

Did You Know?


John Hughes' first choice for the lead role was always Robin Williams, but at the time he was in a bitter fall out with the Walt Disney Company and refused to be in the film. Hughes lined up some other choices including Christopher Lloyd, Jeff Goldblum, 'John Lithgow' and Patrick Stewart. As soon as Robin Williams made peace with the Walt Disney Company, Hughes immediately cast him in the lead.


Revealing mistakes:
Midway through the film, the scene after Philip comes back home in his flying car and is talking to weebo in his kitchen and telling her how much he loves Sara and weebo is recording it. At some point while Philip is standing up in that scene you can see it's daylight out the window but he has just got back in from the outside being night time, further more to prove it should have been night time outside, he turns off the light to go to sleep and weebo flies outside to go to Sara's home.


Phillip Brainard:
Weebo – – I've just solved all our problems!

[showing an image of Dumbo on her display screen]
I'm all ears.

User Review

Mildly amusing kids film


An absent minded professor discovers a new type of rubber that can be
harnessed as an energy source. However his discovery causes him to miss his
wedding and lose his girlfriend. While trying to demonstrate his discovery
to Sara Jean to win her back, he gets the attention of mobster Hoenicker who
wants the discovery for himself.

The story here is unimportant – it's all a bit daft and if you look too
closely at it, it all falls apart. For example – the professor has created
a flying robot that has full intelligence and character but yet he hasn't
made any money for himself or his college!, is the flubber alive or not?
etc. But really it's all about the set pieces and the jokes. As such it
falls down a little – it's good for kids but there's nothing in the crude
slapstick for adults. Jokes include the usual "people getting hit in the
head" style humour.

Williams character is not funny at all – a bit of a weakness in a comedy
lead. In fact his forgetfulness is just stupid at times and doesn't have
any charm to cover it. The funniest bits actually revolve around McDonald's
Wilson – he doesn't get good lines but he has lots of incidental laughs.
Ted Levine and Clancy Brown have both done better than this and are limited
to comedy thugs – although both were probably glad to be in a big movie.
Other well known faces include Raymond J. Barry and Wil Wheaton, although
these are also underused. It's not really a movie about performances but I
think it's still important.

The best characters are Weebo and the flubber. Weebo is quite funny and
actually has a deep character – she's the secretary in love with her boss
type – she also creates a strangely moving scene. The flubber is good –
best in one big musical number halfway through and I wonder if they could
have had more imaginative scenes with it as a character rather than just a
bouncy ball.

Overall it's a kids film – don't expect anything more than