In considering Young Einstein, it is important that one dismiss from mind all connection to the historic figures of Albert Einstein and Marie Curie. You could almost in this sense regard Young Einstein as being an alternate history film. The film has Albert Einstein growing up on an apple farm in Tasmania instead of Germany, where he makes the discovery of Relativity, along with several Newtonian principles, while attempting to manufacture beer bubbles. Elsewhere we see Einstein carving his own surfboard and inventing surfing, deriving the notion of rock music from a childrens hopscotch square and then coming up with the idea of turning his violin into a prototypic electric guitar. This is all presented with a nonchalantly absurd sense of humour upon Seriouss part. There are a number of cute science geek types gags throughout. During the climactic scenes, we encounter Charles Darwin who has a dog on a leash called The Beagle, and also meet a Sigmund Freud who is berated by his mother for picking his nose. Amid the wacky comedy, Serious throws in discussions about the nature of the relative observer and of the speed of light as a universal constant. Even the prostitutes at the hotel engage in discussion on the limitations of Newtonian mechanics under the Einsteinian model.
Yahoo Seriouss appeals as a director and a comic are his sense of gonzo humour and offbeat absurdism. Young Einstein is a film filled with incongruous delights – Serious taking a bath in a tub on the Einstein farm at the same time as he is washing the dinner dishes in the tub; Einsteins mother sitting at a table casually knitting wool direct off the sheeps back; an absolutely adorable scene with Serious saving kittens about to be baked in a pie. On the whole though, Young Einstein is not as funny or inventive as it might have been certainly, Seriouss gonzo visual style and slapstick became a good deal more polished in his subsequent films. Although as a performer, Serious has an appealing innocence and undeniably lively presence that almost single-handedly carries the film over its rough spots.
Serious does not seem that interested in the romance between Albert Einstein and the perkily thrust-jawed Odile Le Clezios Marie Curie, which is depicted with a perfunctory disinterest. If anything, Serious seems more interested in offering up a gentle pacifist message and one for respect for all animal species. Certainly, the overall message in Young Einstein Seriouss obvious championing of brains and the enthusiastically wacky delight in displays of science are a refreshing and welcome change from the bushman persona as aired by Paul Hogan in the same countrys smugly obnoxious Crocodile Dundee (1986) and sequels. Another great plus about Young Einstein is an excellent soundtrack of Australian music Icehouse, The Models, Paul Kelly and some superb choices as to each songs placement.
Yahoo Serious went onto make two other films: Reckless Kelly (1993), a spoof of the Australian bank robber and folklore hero Ned Kelly, whose descendent continues the family tradition and unintentionally becomes a Hollywood star; and Mr. Accident (2000) about the worlds most accident prone man. Seriouss gonzo humour became much more polished through these films, although neither of these proved to be any type of hit outside of Australasia.