Film review: Hawking is a portrait for the fans
The story of a remarkable man, unremarkably told. Stephen Hawking knows his own value: "I was born in 1942, exactly 300 years after Galileo." The Larkin-esque student in 1960s Oxford didn't work that hard, allegedly, so natural was his brilliance, and he ascended greater heights of achievement at Cambridge.
The motor neurone disease to which the 21-year-old scientist then fell prey was expected to kill him within three years; it didn't, and he continued to pursue the "big questions" of cosmology even as his body closed down on him.
Stephen Finnigan's documentary, co-written with Hawking, has the unwavering blandness of an Authorised Life. Divorce from his wife and helpmeet Jane, then a second divorce from his one-time nurse, are tidied away: "Being in the public eye can have its drawbacks," he says in that computerised voice that seems to face down argument.
No one will dare to pay him the honour of suspicion. He enjoys his global fame – why should he not? – though the contributions of celebrity friends such as Branson and Jim Carrey are faintly sickening. It's a portrait for the fans – earnest, uplifting, frictionless.
Review: A panoramic account of the hacking scandalbooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Sabina Altynbekova, the girl branded 'too good looking' for volleyball, says social media obsession with her is a 'bit much'
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 4 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
- 5 'Hello mum, this is going to be hard for you to read ...'
New Netflix releases: Films and TV shows coming August 2014
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy
Star Wars Episode 7: Simon Pegg hints at role
Guardians of the Galaxy - review: A superficial and half-hearted Marvel film
R Kelly dropped from Ohio music festival following backlash
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
- < Previous
- Next >