If anyone has lived a life worthy of a cinematic biography it’s Stephen Hawking, but making a film about the iconic astrophysicist comes with plenty of obvious risks.
James Marsh, an Oscar winner for “Man on Wire,” has cracked the Hawking code with “The Theory of Everything,” a movie that fuses Hawking’s disability, brilliant mind and rich personal life in a portrait that mirrors the mysteries of the vast universe with those of life on this terrestrial plane.
The picture stars Eddie Redmayne in an Oscar-worthy performance as Hawking and revolves around his relationship with his first wife, Jane, (Felicity Jones), showcasing the enduring love between them that only gets stronger and deeper as Hawking is stricken with ALS and his condition worsens.
Their bond is the heart of the story and both actors excel at depicting this unique connection. Redmayne grounds Hawking in tangible emotions that transcend the physical difficulties while Jones evokes the inner resolve of a remarkable woman preternaturally driven to make the best of a difficult situation.
Marsh shows us Hawking’s brain at work, pondering the majesty of the stars and the complexities of the soul. His movie powerfully explores the blurred lines between science and faith, as a man grapples with a debilitating illness and transcends even the most optimistic of projections for what he could achieve with it, thanks in no small part to the woman in his corner.