Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Reviewed by: Staff (Not credited)
    80
    Can't get the kids in your life to pay enough attention to homework? Show them Tom Shepard's terrific documentary, and you might just light a fire.
  2. It's the candid moments of joy and accomplishment -- Welcker finding out she's an Intel contest finalist, Khan learning he's been accepted to Yale, high school valedictorian Cisneros thanking her devoted parents in her graduation speech -- that really make this one soar.
  3. 70
    This quietly absorbing film is finally more about character formation--curiosity, persistence, endurance--than about achievement as a means to some extrinsic social end.
  4. Reviewed by: Ronnie Scheib
    70
    Nominally structured around the Intel Science Talent Search, Whiz Kids traces a dual process: the empowerment of economically challenged students who otherwise might not realize their potential, and the empowerment of the nation through the problem-solving efforts of its best and brightest.
  5. Tom Shepard's quietly observant documentary tracks its stressed-out subjects through an array of personal and scholarly challenges.
  6. It is America's oldest and most prestigious high school science competition. Over two thousand students begin each year vying for slots; 40 are chosen as finalist. For high school science and math geeks this is a big deal.
  7. So even though the science fair was something your other classmates did while you mastered Pitfall!, the sights in Whiz Kids will no doubt stir you.
  8. Though the film seems less like a theatrical release and more like something that might play on an obscure PBS station at 2 p.m. on a Sunday afternoon, it's reasonably interesting as a personality study.

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