Cert: 12A Runtime: 123 mins Director: James Marsh Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Simon McBurney and David Thewlis
His mind changed our world. Her love changed his.
Once TIFF finished this year all I could read was Eddie Redmayne Oscar contender. I thought to myself, this is madness! Stephen Hawking has fascinated me for most of my adult life, but I never really knew much about the man. So what is The Theory of Everything about? At a Cambridge University party in 1963, brilliant yet socially awkward physics postgraduate Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) meets literature student Jane Wilde (Felicity Jones). The attraction between them is immediate, and Jane more than holds her own against his fierce intellect. Stephen’s advanced ideas about theoretical physics and cosmology also impress his tutor, Dennis Sciama (David Thewlis). But then he’s given a devastating diagnosis of motor neurone disease and told he has just two years to live. Jane draws on her inner strength to stand by the man she loves as they face the future together.
The Theory of Everything reminds me of The Iron Lady, the lead performance out shines a dull story. Eddie Redmayne is sensational as Stephen Hawking. I can’t believe I just said that! From his early days, he gave Hawking such wit and charm just like the man himself. Once we get to him at the beginning of Motor Neuron Disease, Redmayne tackles the situation with such raw emotion. You can feel the pain and change in his life and how this genius over came such a crippling illness. Redmayne should be acknowledge for his tremendous work, probably with award nominations. Felicity Jones gets brushed to the side, but her performance is also fantastic. It’s great to see the other side of Hawking and her struggle to help him. This is where the positive feedback ends. This film is a biopic, but a very weak one. I wanted to know more about Hawking, his mind is just a minuscule aspect of the film. Love over powers the film, but for me it just doesn’t work. It’s very over dramatized! James Marsh, best known for his documentaries Man on Wire and Project Nim, has done good work in feature film-making before with the underrated The King. Here he doesn’t get much to register.