The Theory of Everything is a beautiful film. Beautifully shot, beautifully scored but ultimately, it is a story about two beautiful people who had to reinvent themselves and their relationship constantly in the face of challenging life circumstances.
The acclaimed theoretical physicist Stephen J Hawking (Redmayne) is by now quite well-known even in pop culture circles. What is less known perhaps is the journey that both Hawking and his former wife Jane Wilde Hawking (Jones) took to make him the icon that he became despite suffering from debilitating motor neuron disease.
Director Marsh treats both sides of the story diplomatically and sympathetically, although perhaps – especially in the third act – at the expense of narrative clarity. Events are rushed somewhat and real life details are fudged to keep the characters on the good side of the audience.
Whilst Redmayne’s stellar performance is certainly a once-in-a-lifetime distinction, equal credit must go to Jones for portraying Jane’s stoic determination to support her husband. Which is fitting, considering screenwriter McCarten based his screenplay on Jane’s memoir Travelling to Infinity: My Life with Stephen.
In the final analysis, it is clear that the film is as much about her as it is about him and the message of the movie is summed up in Hawking’s quote – “Where there’s life, there’s hope….”
The Theory of Everything is playing in the cinemas now.