Tesla / Synopsis + Complete Story - Og1 2020

Have you ever wondered what it takes to change the world?

Is it sheer brilliance, unwavering determination, or perhaps a touch of madness?

In the mesmerizing biographical drama film Tesla, director Michael Almereyda delves into the life of one of history's most enigmatic figures, Nikola Tesla.

With a stellar cast led by the incomparable Ethan Hawke, this cinematic masterpiece takes us on a captivating journey through the mind of a genius who dared to challenge the status quo.

Brace yourself for a thought-provoking exploration of innovation, rivalry, and the relentless pursuit of greatness.

Get ready to be electrified by the story of Tesla.


Get ready to be captivated by the incredible story of Nikola Tesla in the mesmerizing biographical drama film, "Tesla" (2020). Directed by Michael Almereyda, this film takes you on a thrilling journey through the life of one of history's greatest inventors.

In 1893, we find Tesla and a female companion roller skating, setting the stage for the extraordinary events to come. As a young boy, Tesla was inspired by static electricity while petting his cat, and this spark ignited a lifelong passion for innovation.

Flashback to 1884 in New York City, where Tesla is working for the renowned Thomas Edison. However, Edison dismisses Tesla's groundbreaking ideas about alternating current and refuses to acknowledge his contributions.

The narrator interjects, revealing the deeper reasons behind Edison's behavior, including the tragic loss of his wife.

It becomes clear that Tesla's genius is overshadowed by Edison's popularity and lavish lifestyle.

Undeterred, Tesla pitches his revolutionary induction motor to investors, hoping to secure the support he needs. Along the way, he encounters fascinating characters like Professor Anthony, who advises him to break up his invention into multiple patents.

Tesla also forms connections with Anthony's daughter Evelyn and Anne Morgan, the daughter of J.P.

Morgan and our film's narrator.

Enter George Westinghouse, an inventor and businessman who recognizes Tesla's brilliance and buys his patents. Together, they embark on a mission to bring electricity to every home, facing fierce opposition from Edison, who claims that alternating current is dangerous.

Edison even uses Westinghouse's invention as a tool for capital punishment, further intensifying the rivalry.

As Tesla's inventions gain momentum, he showcases his genius at the World's Fair in Chicago in 1893. Edison, realizing his mistake, offers to partner with Tesla, but the narrator clarifies that this meeting never occurred. Tesla's journey takes him to the Niagara Falls hydroelectric power plant, where he oversees its design, and eventually to Colorado Springs, where he harnesses the power of lightning storms with his Tesla coil.

Throughout his life, Tesla encounters influential figures like the renowned actress Sarah Bernhardt and J.P. Morgan, who invests in his work. However, both Tesla and Edison face setbacks, with Edison's mining venture failing and Tesla struggling to secure funding for his projects.

Despite these challenges, Tesla's unwavering passion for innovation remains.

As the film draws to a close, we witness Tesla's loneliness in his later years, outliving his peers but dying alone at the age of 87. The narrator reflects on the world we live in today, wondering if it is what Tesla had envisioned.

Prepare to be inspired and enthralled by the remarkable story of Nikola Tesla in "Tesla" (2020). This biographical drama will take you on a rollercoaster ride of innovation, rivalry, and the enduring legacy of one of history's greatest minds.

A Spark of Inspiration

In 1893, Nikola Tesla and a female companion glide across the roller rink, their movements mirroring the electric energy that courses through Tesla's mind. As they skate, a narrator reveals the origins of Tesla's fascination with electricity, sparked by a childhood encounter with static electricity while petting his cat.

A Clash of Titans

Rewinding nine years to 1884, we find Tesla working under the shadow of the renowned Thomas Edison in bustling New York City. Tesla's revolutionary idea of alternating current is met with disdain by Edison, who dismisses his suggestions and refuses to acknowledge his brilliance.

The narrator interjects, debunking the myth of a playful ice cream cone fight and delving into the true reasons behind Edison's resistance, including the tragic loss of his wife.

A Battle for Recognition

While Edison finds love again with Mina, Tesla pitches his groundbreaking induction motor to investors Brown and Peck. With the help of his assistant Szigeti, Tesla impresses Professor Anthony, who advises him to patent his invention in smaller parts.

Along the way, Tesla encounters Evelyn, Anthony's daughter, and Anne Morgan, the daughter of J.P Morgan and our insightful narrator.

The Power Play

Enter George Westinghouse, a rival inventor and businessman, who recognizes Tesla's genius and purchases his patents. Together, they embark on a mission to bring electricity to every home, with Tesla receiving royalties for each installation.

However, their path is obstructed by Edison, who wages a war against alternating current, even using it as a gruesome tool of capital punishment.

Undeterred, Tesla showcases the power of his invention to a mesmerized audience.

Betrayal and Redemption

As Tesla's assistant Szigeti faces disappointment, Tesla's relationship with Anne deepens. His invention powers the grand World's Fair in Chicago in 1893, but a meeting with Edison, where the latter admits his mistake and offers a partnership, is revealed to be a fabrication.

Undeterred, Tesla forges ahead, while Anne clarifies the truth behind their encounter.

Envy and Triumph

Edison's envy of Tesla intensifies when renowned actress Sarah Bernhardt records for his gramophone. Tesla's connection with Bernhardt sparks jealousy in Edison, who tries to separate them. Meanwhile, Tesla oversees the design of the Niagara Falls hydroelectric power plant, a testament to his unwavering determination.

Love and Loss

  • P Morgan, intrigued by Tesla's brilliance, questions Anne about Tesla's romantic intentions. Anne confronts Tesla, only to discover that his focus lies in his work and a new invention. Disheartened, she watches as Tesla prepares to move to Colorado, leaving their potential romance behind. In Colorado Springs, Tesla harnesses the power of lightning storms with his Tesla coil.
  • Investments and Setbacks

    Tesla reunites with Bernhardt, who expresses interest in him, but he fails to attend her performance. J.P Morgan invests in Tesla's invention, providing him with much-needed funding. However, in 1901, Edison's mining venture fails, and Tesla's progress stagnates.

    Despite Marconi's use of Tesla's patents, Tesla becomes consumed with receiving and decoding signals he believes are from Mars.

    His plea for more funding from J.P.

    Morgan is met with rejection.

    The Legacy of a Visionary

    As Tesla sings along to "Everybody Wants to Rule the World," the film presents a montage of stills, capturing the essence of his extraordinary life. Anne, now in France, reflects on Tesla's lonely death at the age of 87, outliving his contemporaries.

    She ponders the world we live in today, wondering if it is the manifestation of Tesla's visionary dreams.

    Discussion topics

  • 1) How would you summarize the story of "Tesla" (2020) and what do you think are its main themes or ideas?
  • 2) In what ways does the film challenge or subvert traditional biographical storytelling? How does this affect your understanding of Nikola Tesla's life and work?
  • 3) How does the character of Anne Morgan contribute to the narrative and what does her presence reveal about the societal expectations and limitations faced by women during that time period?
  • 4) How does the film portray the rivalry between Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison? Do you think it accurately represents their historical relationship, or does it take creative liberties for dramatic effect?
  • 5) How does the film explore the theme of innovation and the clash between different approaches to technology and electricity, as represented by Nikola Tesla and George Westinghouse?
  • 6) What do you think the film is trying to say about the role of money and power in shaping scientific discoveries and inventions, as exemplified by J.P. Morgan's involvement in Tesla's work?
  • 7) How does the film use visual and narrative techniques to convey Tesla's unique perspective and his visionary ideas? Do you think these techniques enhance or detract from the storytelling?
  • 8) How does the film address the concept of legacy and the recognition of scientific contributions? Do you think Tesla's legacy has been adequately acknowledged in history?
  • 9) How does the film explore the theme of isolation and the challenges faced by individuals who think differently or challenge societal norms, as seen through Tesla's character?
  • 10) How does the film depict the relationship between science and art, particularly through Tesla's fascination with pigeons and his belief in the interconnectedness of all things?
  • 11) How does the film's portrayal of Tesla's life and work resonate with current discussions and debates surrounding renewable energy, technological advancements, and the role of inventors and innovators in society?
  • 12) What impact did the film have on your understanding of Nikola Tesla's contributions to science and technology? Did it challenge any preconceived notions or inspire you to learn more about his life and work?
  • 13) How does the film explore the theme of perseverance and the sacrifices made by individuals who are ahead of their time? Do you think Tesla's struggles and achievements are relatable to other historical figures or contemporary innovators?
  • 14) How does the film use humor and satire to comment on the characters and events depicted? Do you think this approach enhances or detracts from the overall narrative?
  • 15) How does the film's non-linear narrative structure contribute to your understanding of Tesla's life and work? Do you think it effectively captures the complexity and multidimensionality of his character?
  • Closing remarks and recommendations

    So, you've just finished watching the Tesla movie, huh? I bet your mind is buzzing with all sorts of thoughts and emotions right now. Well, let me add a little more fuel to that fire with some food for thought.

    First of all, let's talk about the performances. Ethan Hawke as Nikola Tesla was simply mesmerizing. He captured the brilliance and eccentricity of the man with such finesse that it's hard to imagine anyone else in the role. And Eve Hewson as Anne Morgan, Tesla's love interest, brought a refreshing depth to the character. Their chemistry on screen was electric (pun intended), and it added an extra layer of intrigue to the story.

    But what really struck me about this film was its portrayal of the battle between Tesla and his contemporaries, particularly Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse. It's a clash of egos, ideologies, and ultimately, the pursuit of power. Kyle MacLachlan as Edison and Jim Gaffigan as Westinghouse both delivered strong performances, showcasing the stark contrast between their characters' approaches to innovation and business.

    One of the most thought-provoking aspects of the movie was the exploration of Tesla's ideas and inventions. From his experiments with wireless energy transmission to his vision of a world powered by renewable sources, it's clear that Tesla was way ahead of his time. And yet, his ideas were often dismissed or overshadowed by others who were better at marketing and self-promotion. It makes you wonder how many other brilliant minds throughout history have been overlooked or forgotten.

    In the end, the Tesla movie leaves us with a sense of awe and wonder, but also a tinge of sadness. It's a reminder that genius doesn't always guarantee recognition or success. But perhaps that's what makes Tesla's story so compelling. It's a reminder that sometimes, the most important ideas are the ones that challenge the status quo and push the boundaries of what we think is possible.

    So, as you reflect on the movie and its portrayal of Nikola Tesla's life, I encourage you to delve deeper into his work and legacy. Let his story inspire you to question, to dream, and to never be afraid of pursuing your own unique ideas, no matter how unconventional they may seem. Because who knows, maybe one day, you'll be the one who changes the world.

    Tesla - Official Trailer I HD I IFC Films

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    Or maybe you haven't watched it and are trying to figure out if the movie is for you:

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