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Hawking [DVD]


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Product details

  • Actors: Benedict Cumberbatch
  • Directors: Philip Martin
  • Writers: Peter Moffat
  • Producers: Jessica Pope
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Simply Media
  • DVD Release Date: 13 Sept. 2004
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002W0YKW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 56,302 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Fictionalised biography of Professor Stephen Hawking starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the young Stephen Hawking who, as a bright and ambitious 21 year-old PhD student at Cambridge University, is diagnosed with the debilitating motor neurone disease and given two years to live. The drama tells how, against the odds, he goes on to achieve scientific success and worldwide acclaim.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Speedwell on 7 Jun. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Have been interested in SH since 1980+/-. Am inspired and encouraged by people's heroic struggles against the odds and this is really one of those. Enjoyed the 'fictional' private life that was depicted, and loved the scientific parts. For someone who does not know that much, this film neatly sorted out precisely what SH accomplished when it came to the 'static universe' debate. As for the scenes depicting the two Nobel Prize winners who discovered the residual hiss of the big bang, this movie was worth watching for that alone. And of course am a big Cummberbatch fan, and enjoyed his performance just as much as I always do. I wish there'd been more, but what was there was really worth it, and is a movie that will be watched again.
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72 of 75 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 16 May 2005
Format: DVD
A gripping account of the famous physicists diagnosis of motor neuron disease at the age of 21, and his subsequent discoveries in the field of cosmology, in particular his work on the big bang and black holes. Hawking's neurological demise is excellently portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch, and the blossoming relationship between Hawking and his future wife Jane, in the face of his rapidly diminishing health, is beautifully depicted. Hawking's realisation of the concept that led to his explanation of the big bang is an incredibly uplifting moment. I could not recommend this highly enough!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Jen on 11 Jan. 2015
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
So while there's all the buzz about the Theory of Everything, no-one's mentioned that Cumberbatch had given a portrayal of Hawking at university and the time of his diagnosis in this quiet, understated film from the BBC for which he was Bafta nominated. Great British supporting cast with well-known faces, Well worth watching.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Shirley Herbert on 4 May 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
What a beautifully done, inspiring film which several times brought tears to my eyes as it celebrated both the human spirit and physics as an adventure of the mind! It also reminds us what a good actor Benedict Cumberbatch is. Here he uses his physicality to portray a body becoming more and more disabled. In his recent role as the Frankenstein monster, he labors in anguish to gain control of his newly created body.
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39 of 42 people found the following review helpful By Maria Fleischhack - The Baker Street Babes Podcast on 27 Nov. 2010
Format: DVD
Hawking is one of the better BBC productions, and Ben Cumberbatch manages to portray the scientist in his early years both beautifully and saddening. Not only does the film cover the most important of Hawking's ideas, but, more importantly, his disease and his way of dealing with it and fighting a fight that everyone thought he had already lost. It's a very inspirational film with a perfect performance by the actors.

I highly recommend this film, because it shows how strong a human being can be when both physical and professional obstacles are thrown in his way.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By David H J Ashdown TOP 500 REVIEWER on 28 Dec. 2013
Format: DVD
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or MND is a terrible condition that in most cases leads to death in 3 years with only 4% surviving up to 10 years , Stephen Hawking is unique in having survived for 50 years with the affliction and it is testament to his incredible intellect that has been able to contribute so much to the understanding of cosmology specifically the " big bang " and the existence of black holes. Benedict Cumberbatch brilliantly portrays Professor Hawking when he was diagnosed with MND at the age of 21 and still a fledgling Ph.D student. The rest of Stephen Hawking's life is well documented but this early account is worth watching as it shows that even when presented with the most terrible prognosis it is still possible to lead a fulfilling life. Not many scientists can have had a more profound effect on our understanding of why we exist and where we're going , he is an inspiration to all those who come into contact with him.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By J. Myllyluoma on 31 Mar. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The contribution of the cast as well as the production crew (many familiar names here for Sherlock as well as Who fans) need no further comment. Other reviewers have already expounded at length upon exactly how top-notch all of it is, and it is all true.

The film focuses upon a few but very important years in Hawking's life; his time as graduate student at Cambridge 1962-1965.
The timeline is slightly blurred for dramatic reasons -- e.g. in reality, Hawking was admitted to Trinity Hall in 1962, and was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 1963, while the movie flips these events around -- but the movie has a very interesting device in that it occasionally flashes forward to 1978 and an interview session with Robert Wilson and Arno Penzias on the eve of their Nobel Prize. And while it's all just a matter of historical record, the following may contain some plot spoilers:

In experimenting with the Holmdel horn antenna 1964-65, the pair had discovered a persistent background noise, but had absolutely no clue as to what might be causing it. They even went to the point of shooting the pigeons nesting in the antenna and removing their droppings (or "white dielectric material") as one, for them, plausible source for the signal.
At the same time, Hawking had had an epiphany about applying Roger Penrose's theorem of a spacetime singularity in the centre of black holes to the university as a whole, and how the flow of time of an implosion reversing in the singularity would instead cause a bang -- a Big Bang. In 1965, he wrote his thesis on this topic.

In the movie, Professor Fred Hoyle challenges his conclusions by stating that according to Hawking's theory, there ought to be residual heat in the universe, and that somebody ought to have detected it by now...
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