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Saturday 10 December 2016

Formula for an Oscar in Hawking love story

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IT'S hard to know where to stand on Eddie Redmayne. His youthful enthusiasm and bubbly style are just so annoying, but it can't be denied he's a fine actor.

So good, in fact, that his role as brilliant physicist Stephen Hawking here earned him an Oscar.

It opens with Hawking as a student at Cambridge University (cue stunning backdrops) and his blossoming relationship with literature student Jane Wilde (Felicity Jones). And it's the love story that takes centre stage - a bit too much at times - as Hawking's brilliant work on black holes, time and creation are relegated to the background.

That said, the two leads excel when the story takes a dark turn and Stephen's muscles begin to fail. Motor neurone disease (and a warning that he'll die within two years) are the grim prognosis.

But Jane won't let Stephen become a recluse, and professes her love for him and tells his father that they'll marry.

Two children later, and while physics isn't a problem, marital chemistry is, and Jane, feeling neglected, joins a church choir as an outlet.

It's there that she meets, and later falls in love with, widower Jonathan Hellyer Jones (Charlie Cox).

For a movie about a brilliant mind, we don't learn too much about Hawking's thoughts and ideas, and it's mainly a love story tied up with a sweet ending.

No classic, but still a must-see.

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