Movie Review: The Theory of Everything (2014)

Details: About two hours long. Romantic drama starring Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, and Tom Prior.

The Theory of Everything is a love story, but more about the duration/endurance of love, rather than just its beginning or end.

You know the story. Stephen Hawking, one of the great physicists of our time develops motor neuron disease, a disease where people lose control of their bodies and has no effect on the mind. They are trapped in their bodies in a way. The life expectancy of those with this disease is also short, with Hawking’s life expectancy no longer than two years after diagnosis. Despite this diagnosis, Hawking marries, has three children, writes a best selling novel on his theories, and survives his life expectancy by a few decades. He continues to do so today.

It’s a sad yet encouraging tale. Although, a friend I watched the film with may be better at expressing why the film is so good. After the film ended, one of my male friends cried… loudly. He said that the passage of time and how all these events from Hawking’s life, from the development of his disease to the birth of his children, was incredibly moving.

Personally, I thought the film was good. The problems I had which prevent it from being extraordinary are the same problems I had with Ray (starring Jamie Foxx). I had already learned so much about the reality that the fiction was uninteresting. For me, the reality was always far more interesting than the fiction. Further, reality is far more messy and Hollywood’s attempt to clean it up into three acts is disturbing to me and somewhat of an insult to the plight of the real Stephen Hawking.

Additionally, Eddie Redmayne was fine as Stephen Hawking, although I wonder about how much acting talent is required to speak less lines and show less emotion as a film progresses. Not sure he should have won the Oscar, though my crying friend disagrees. Felicity Jones on the other hand was great, showing far more emotion. She portrayed perfectly a woman in love, in pain, and doing her best to persevere.

Score: 7/10 A good film that is over two hours long. The ideal length for me is an hour and a half, but this film deserves the extra run time.

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