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The Theory of Everything (2014)

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A look at the relationship between the famous physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife.

Director:

James Marsh

Writers:

Anthony McCarten (screenplay), Jane Hawking (book)
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Popularity
1,277 ( 192)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 25 wins & 122 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Eddie Redmayne ... Stephen Hawking
Felicity Jones ... Jane Hawking
Tom Prior ... Robert Hawking - Age 17
Sophie Perry Sophie Perry ... Lucy Hawking - Age 14
Finlay Wright-Stephens Finlay Wright-Stephens ... Timothy Hawking - Age 8
Harry Lloyd ... Brian
Alice Orr-Ewing ... Diana King
David Thewlis ... Dennis Sciama
Thomas Morrison Thomas Morrison ... Carter
Michael Marcus ... Ellis
Gruffudd Glyn Gruffudd Glyn ... Rees
Paul Longley Paul Longley ... Barman - Rowing Club
Emily Watson ... Beryl Wilde
Guy Oliver-Watts Guy Oliver-Watts ... George Wilde
Simon McBurney ... Frank Hawking
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Storyline

The Theory of Everything is the story of the most brilliant and celebrated physicist of our time, Stephen Hawking, and Jane Wilde the arts student he fell in love with whilst studying at Cambridge in the 1960s. Little was expected from Stephen Hawking, a bright but shiftless student of cosmology, given just two years to live following the diagnosis of a fatal illness at 21 years of age. He became galvanized, however, by the love of fellow Cambridge student, Jane Wilde, and he went on to be called the successor to Einstein, as well as a husband and father to their three children. Over the course of their marriage as Stephen's body collapsed and his academic renown soared, fault lines were exposed that tested the lineaments of their relationship and dramatically altered the course of both of their lives. Written by Spencer Higham

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Consider Everything. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and suggestive material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Japan | USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

26 November 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Theory of Everything See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$208,763, 7 November 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$35,893,537

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$123,726,688
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.40 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Eddie Redmayne met with Stephen Hawking only once before filming. "In the three hours I spent with him, he said maybe eight sentences," recalls Redmayne. "I just didn't feel like I could ask him intimate things." Therefore, he found other ways to prepare for the role. He lost about fifteen pounds and trained for four months with a dancer to learn how to control his body. He met with forty ALS patients, kept a chart tracking the order in which Hawking's muscles declined, and stood in front of a mirror for hours on end, contorting his face. Lastly, he remained motionless and hunched over between takes, so much so that an osteopath told him he had altered the alignment of his spine. "I fear I'm a bit of a control freak," Redmayne admits. "I was obsessive. I'm not sure it was healthy." See more »

Goofs

When Jane Hawking is attempting to teach Stephen how to speak using eye cues, after his tracheotomy surgery, she states all of the colors on the board except yellow. She does this twice in spite of the fact that yellow is clearly visible. See more »

Quotes

Doctor: It's called motor neuron disease. It's a progressive neurological disorder that destroys the cells in the brain that control essential muscle activity, such as speaking, walking, breathing, swallowing. The signals that muscles must receive in order to move are disrupted. The result is gradual muscle decay. Wasting away. Eventually, the ability to control voluntary movement is lost. Entirely. I'm afraid average life expectancy is two years. There's nothing I can do for you.
Stephen Hawking: What about the brain?
Doctor:
See more »


Soundtracks

(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave
Written by Lamont Dozier (as Dozier), Brian Holland (as Holland), Eddie Holland (as Holland Jr.)
Performed by Martha & The Vandellas (as Martha Reeves & The Vandellas)
Courtesy of The Motown Record Company LP
Under licence from Universal Music Operations Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Theory of Nothing: highly overrated generic tripe
21 December 2014 | by bliz82See all my reviews

This is 2014's most overrated film of the year. While Eddie Redmayne is good as Stephen Hawking, it's really just a performance that deceives the viewer and critic. He looks like Hawking. His hair and clothes look like Hawking. He does the 'Hawking' smile and weird thinking stare face and frowns. Yes, he does a believable Hawking. Well done. But it's just a glorified impersonation. There's no actual great acting or stretch of a transformation or method or scenes that Redmayne is tested as an actor nor Hawking's character development. The dialogue and interactions, aside from using actual Hawking quotes from speeches and writings, are awful and boring and redundant and derivative. The whole performance is mild and plain, and the story is weak. The story has generally been done before. There are no significant scenes or moments that go above and beyond anything generic, nor anything for Redmayne to truly bite into to 'perform.' Even the accident and fall portion of the film is mild and never really becomes that emotional at all. Mostly, the film fails miserably in exploring Hawking's internal thoughts, imagination, rituals, and inspirations.

It plays like a T.V. movie. And quite frankly i'm tired of these Hollywood films doing biopics about an ENTIRE life, using montage and generic moments that aren't specific or significant enough. Biopics that are focused on a period on a life is more interesting than trying to do a whole life in two hours. There's no sense of Hawking and his children in his life. Births are fast-tracked, montage child play and smiles. The film gives you an impression of just Jane, his wife, being a vessel for children. There's no sense of Hawkings personal life, interests, time spent, or anything underpinning the vast ideas he develops. We see him on a beach or being pushed in a wheelchair by family as piano plays. The film is devoid of politics or popular culture and changing times of each decade other than clothes as lazy indicators, and the exception of pointing out Penthouse a few times as some recurring wink wink joke to convey Hawking as some sexual guy. This 'sexualized' Hawking happens throughout the film in various ways..."so Stephen, do some things still 'work.'" The movie mostly follows Jane and her torn affair with some choir priest. In fact, Jane is in more scenes and gets more to act on screen than Stephen Hawking (and Redmayne for that matter). The story is more focused on tripe romance and affair rather than Hawking. And even when departing, a montage is set in again. No emotional development is organic. And, perhaps, maybe as brilliant as Hawking is and as tragic as his condition is, maybe he's just a boring guy and not much can be that interesting in terms of a character on film in scenes other than a guy sitting in a wheelchair mumbling and smiling and frowning. The film would've done a better job with Hawking's imagination and space interpreted in shots, as well as the times he was living in and absorbing and watching as opposed to generic renderings of his domestic life (which was still mild and safe compared to the actual reality) and Jane's struggle and perspective. Everything is furthered by cued dramatic music and montage and shots of faces occasionally. By trying to cram in broad strokes in writing the film into a corner with Jane's story, the theory of everything becomes theory of nothing.


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