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The Theory of Everything

There are so many wasted opportunities in this movie that I hesitate to recommend it. Here is the raw material in more-or-less chronological order: an atheist theoretical physicist studying time, black holes, and the beginning of the universe falls in love with a devout wife, develops a catastrophic neurological condition, gets married and has children, becomes world-famous, gets a tracheotomy and can’t talk any more, gets a robotic voice, falls out of love, divorces, marries his nurse, denies suspicions of domestic abuse by the said nurse, divorces the nurse, reconciles with the first wife, never wins a Nobel prize and never will because it will take too much time for his theories to be proven correct.

With so many intertwined plot lines and obsession with time you would think this would be non-linear story, or better yet a series of reverse-chronological set pieces that covers the highlights in depth. What we get instead is a shallow, lukewarm love story carried entirely by the walking-to-debilitated transformation of Eddie Redmayne whose best actor Oscar is one of the better deserved. If you want to tell such a complex life story beginning-to-end, make it into a mini-series and put it up on Netflix.

Directed by James Marsh, 2014

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