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The Theory of Everything: Movie Review

Movieguide Magazine


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The Theory of Everything follows the life of world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) and his wife Jane Hawking (Felicity Jones).

During the beginning of the movie Stephen is an active, comedic 21-year-old doctoral student who attends Cambridge University studying cosmology, but has yet to declare a major. It would seem that he is either a late-bloomer, or just not taking his academic future completely seriously. However, his professor soon begins to see beyond Stephen’s quirkiness, to Stephen’s brilliant genius. Stephen questions the existence of God, theorizes about black holes, and that there is a time before time that can be scientifically and mathematically deduced.

Stephen meets Jane, also a student at Cambridge, and they fall in love. Their romance begins to blossom and Stephen begins to work on the mathematics to establish before time existed. They debate and discuss about God’s existence, being that Jane, unlike Stephen, believes strongly in God. They accept one another’s differences and continue to grow closer.

As Stephen works on hours of mathematical equations, his fingers begin to draw up, but he continues. His work seems to just be taking off when Stephen loses control of his legs and falls onto the pavement as he’s walking on campus and is knocked unconscious. His doctor diagnoses him with debilitating motor neuron disease (MND), which will in time cause him to lose all sense of control of his motor skills. His brain, however, will continue to function normally, but, eventually, he wouldn’t be able to communicate his thoughts. The doctor gives him two years to live. (More plot explanation/spoilers -

The Theory of Everything is a well-shot, well-told love story with comedic moments woven throughout to keep the movie engaging as well as inspiring. There is a very strong positivistic scientism worldview in the movie as Stephen holds to the theory that everything in existence can be explained and proven by science. Thus, there isn’t a need for God. For the most part, Stephen seems to be atheistic in his belief of God, and he reasons that the beginning of the universe can be explained through science without God. However, there is a moment where he does acknowledge God’s existence, or the possibility of God’s existence. This is one of the underlying tensions within Stephen and Jane’s marriage as Jane was brought up as a devout Christian follower of God. Eventually, this tension plays out and after their years together in love, laughter, trials, and triumphs, Stephen and Jane separate.

Much can be said about the brilliance of Stephen Hawking’s mind and how he has survived so many years with MND. Spiritually speaking, could it be that God is giving Stephen time? Time to come to know Him and that, beyond all Stephen’s theories, God is profoundly the Great I Am.

The Theory of Everything eloquently tells a story of unconditional love and humor between Jane and Stephen through pain, perseverance and sacrifice. In this case, the saying rings true that, “Behind every great man there’s a great woman.” As Stephen is knighted in England, he invites Jane and the children to meet the Queen of England, realizing that he couldn’t have done it without Jane’s unflinching servitude and love. That said, extreme caution is advised for the romantic view of atheism.

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MOVIEGUIDE® was founded in 1985 by Dr. Ted Baehr, past president of the Episcopal Radio & Television Foundation and former director of the Television Center at the City University of New York. MOVIEGUIDE® is affiliated with the Christian Film & Television Commission® ministry (CFTVC). Both MOVIEGUIDE® and CFTVC are dedicated to redeeming the values of the entertainment industry, according to biblical principles, by influencing industry executives and artists and by informing and educating the public about the influence of the entertainment media and about how to train their families to become