review: the theory of everything (2014)

“Look what we made.”

After seeing Eddie Redmayne take the Golden Globe from under Cumberbatch’s nose, I made it my priority for The Theory of Everything to be the next film I watched. Unfortunately, my return to my last semester of school has decreased my movie-watching availability, and that is why I did not watch this film until now.

Synopsis (IMDB): The relationship between the famous physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife.

First of all – IMDB… what are you doing? That is the weakest synopsis by them thus far. That isn’t even a real sentence.

WHAT I LIKED.

Eddie Redmayne.
Starting off with my disappointment when seeing Cumberbatch lose the Golden Globe for Best Male Actor, I sort of started this movie with a little grudge in the back of my mind. Don’t get me wrong – I developed very strong feelings for Redmayne after his performance as Marius in Les Miserables – but I guess I just never saw him as an award winner. Maybe for like a Teen Choice Award or something, but he seemed more of the fan-girl-attracting type of actor. After watching this though, I see him completely differently. His performance was astounding – and this was very obviously a tricky role to play. Stephen Hawking should definitely be proud of Redmayne for this one. The emotion he was able to portray, while keeping in mind that his muscles weren’t supposed to be able to move normally, is absolutely astonishing. Just the little subtle things he did – his facial expressions, the smallest twitch of a finger – sent my feelings into a vortex.

The score.
Oh my lanta. That score was maybe the most beautiful thing I have ever heard. I thought the score for The Imitation Game was beautiful – this was on a whole new level. Absolutely incredible. Additionally, as a dance choreographer, I actually don’t often find myself inspired to dance to film scores. Scores made for film are typically good for film, and average for dance. While watching this however, I felt my entire body wanting to get up and just start moving. Unreal.

David Thewlis as Dennis Sciama.
Not gonna lie – the second Thewlis appeared onscreen, the first thought that came jolting into my head was, “LUPIN!!!”. After getting over that, I really came to appreciate his performance. He did an amazing job at playing his character, the kind, intelligent, believing professor. I honestly think his performance and presence helped carry the film, right to the end.

The falling scene.
Why is this in the “What I Liked” section? Because they didn’t overdo it. They had so many opportunities to blow this moment way out of proportion, but they didn’t. Hawking lost control of his muscles, and collapsed. I mean, there was the all-too-obvious shot of Hawking hitting his head on the ground, but they honestly couldn’t have shown this moment without that one cheesy shot. Everything else, including timing, and sound mixing for this moment was perfect.

WHAT I WAS ON THE FENCE ABOUT.

Felicity Jones as Jane Hawking.
I’m so sad that I have to put Felicity Jones in my “On The Fence” section. Like Crazy (2001) is maybe one of my favourite movies of all time, and its all due to her. I absolutely love her as an actress, and to be quite honest, I was more excited that she was in this film than Redmayne. And I love Redmayne. While her performance as Jane Hawking was believable, and she definitely portrayed her emotions strongly, through the screen, I didn’t believe the chemistry between her and Redmayne. They both did unbelievable jobs playing their individual characters, but I didn’t believe them together.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE.

The overall film (structure/pacing).
Here are my feelings on this film. Redmayne? Amazing. The score? Amazing. The acting overall? Amazing. The story? Amazing of course – it’s freaking Stephen Hawking. The overall movie? Good. There was something about the structure of the film, and the way the events were paced, that left me feeling quite underwhelmed when it ended. Everything technically built up for The Theory of Everything to be a mind-blowing movie. For some reason, it wasn’t. OK, when I say this, I don’t mean it was bad – I’m still giving it 5 stars – it just wasn’t The Imitation Game (can you tell I like that one?). But honestly, I was talking to a housemate about it, and she told me, maybe I felt underwhelmed because everyone had hyped this one up for me too much. However, The Imitation Game was definitely overhyped for me, and I was still blown away.

FINAL COMMENTS.

So yeah, do Redmayne, and Jóhann Jóhannsson (composer) definitely deserve all the awards they get.

I strongly disagree however, to anyone who thinks The Theory of Everything should win Best Picture.

just my rating: ★★★★★

Other reviews on The Theory of Everything (2014)
Reading with a Cuppa – FILM: The Theory of Everything
Not Another Fiery Redhead – The Theory of Everything
ladyofletters34 – The Theory of Everything (2014): Review

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