Hawking (2004) – One of Benedict Cumberbatch’s Best Acts

This is the story of a search for the beginning of  time.

That was the tag line of the movie, my tagline for this movie is this:

Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Hawking has made me admire him more.

I think I am beginning to drift farther and farther away from all the blockbuster movie actors as the small scale actors show more awing performances than those famous Hollywood actors. I love underrated actors more and more each day.

I thought Benedict as Sherlock was already his masterpiece performance, but he shows another amazing performance as Stephen Hawking. It’s a pity that his role in Creation was not challenging at all.I hope he has better role in Tinker, Soldier Spy (Still waiting for it to be played here)

Before I talk more about Benedict, let’s talk about the movie first.

Summary taken from Divxcentral.com

Hawking stars 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. Against the odds, he goes on to achieve scientific success and worldwide acclaim, in particular with his best-selling book A Brief History Of Time.

The Story was made in two different times which then collide each other, it made me say “aaa…I see!” The movie started with Arno Penzias (Michael Brandon) and Robert Wilson (Tom Hodgkins) recording their story of finding noise or hiss in the space (these two gentlemen were awarded with Nobel Prize

Wilson: We didn’t meet him
Panzia: He was in England We were in new Jersey. we didn’t even know he existed. Did you know he existed?
Wilson: We have no idea who he was. Stephen hawking, who’s he?

The story shifted to young Stephen Hawking (Benedict Cumberbatch) celebrating his 21st Birthday. The day where he found himself difficult to get up. He was then diagnosed of having amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). His brain was losing control of his body muscles. But what he was worried the most is his best asset.

Stephen Hawking: What about the brain, I mean the brain itself?
Dr. John Holloway: Untouched. The brain is left untouched.

The doctor told his parents that he won’t live long…and yet, he continued his study. Life began to get harder for him as he found himself struggling to untie his shoelaces.

His study then led to the finding of theory to support the big bang theory,or in wikipedia word:

He applied complex mathematical model they had created from Albert Einstein‘s theory of general relativity. This led, in 1970, to Hawking proving the first of many singularity theorems; such theorems provide a set of sufficient conditions for the existence of a gravitational singularity in space-time. This work showed that, far from being mathematical curiosities which appear only in special cases, singularities are a fairly generic feature of general relativity.

This is a spoiler, whiten it with your cursor if you don’t mind spoiler. I was thrilled with this quote below, so even though it’s a spoiler I need to share it here.

When a professor, Sir Fred Hoyle, challenged him to prove the radiation caused by that massive big bang…it connected to Panzia and Wilson.

Panzia: This noise, this Goddamn beautiful hiss. It connects. It’s the sound of the beginning of time. The leftover heat from the big-bang, the three degrees that hasn’t cooled yet.
Wilson: It’s everywhere, it’s all around us.
Panzia: It’s 15 billions years old.
Wilson: And we found it.
Panzia: That’s our discovery.

And another great quote closed the story:

Stephen Hawking: We are very very small. But we are profoundly capable of very very big things

A reviewer in Imdb.com compared the movie to A Beautiful Mind,but he like Hawking more.

The film is very much aware of the fact that it will be compared with “A beautiful mind” – it even refers to the “beautiful” concept among scientists. In many ways I much prefer this portrait of a much more sympathetic beautiful mind.

I haven’t seen A Beautiful Mind, so I can’t second his opinion…but now I want to find that movie and compare it 🙂

You know, I have a thing for man with bright brain…seeing Benedict acted as one of the most genius men on planet is surely a treat. Some of you might find the movie as boring movie…no surprise there…because it talks so much about physic. I didn’t find it boring because I enjoy watching science documentary. Science fascinates me, as simple as that! It’s an inspiring movie.

Cumberbatch and HawkingNow, let’s talk about Benedict Cumberbatch 🙂

He was brilliant!! We could clearly see how his body movement changed  from normal to limited movement.  His speech also gradually changed into something a bit difficult to understand. His face expression also changed from innocent to a bit older expression.

My favorite scene was when he tried to explain his theory to Roger Penrose in a slurring words but shows high enthusiasm. I repeat that moment again and again…I love his act on that scene. the happiness of having deliver his theory was so transparent

I found an interesting article in BBC.co.uk, I will share some quotes from Bennedict related to the movie

On Stephen Hawking: He’s such a presence and you have to really know what you want to say to him or ask him because it takes such a huge, phenomenal effort for him to communicate with you; you think, ‘I really don’t want to waste this man’s time’

But he was very funny and made me laugh. He’s got a good sense of humour. It takes a long time for a one-liner to come out, but when they do, they’re fantastic!

He’s a small person with an incredible brain in a very fragile body, thinking incredibly huge thoughts.

On his role: “It was tricky knowing what to concentrate on because great though the challenges of the role were, there was a lot to get right and a lot that could actually go very wrong, so it took me a while to prioritise and it was a gradual learning process”

“The people who know them work in split seconds and even on TV screens, they’ll pick up an inconsistency. It was very, very hard. There were a couple of equations that I learned and there were other ways of cheating,” he confesses.

“I’m not a mathematician or a scientist by any stretch. I’ve got a layman’s popular interest in the subject but it was just like coming into an Egyptian tomb and seeing hieroglyphics for the first time. It doesn’t make any sense – it looks like someone’s trying to communicate from an outer planetary orbit! There were certain symbols which mean a lot, like the infinity symbol, and we had someone on board who is a fantastic pupil of Stephen’s.”

“Probably one of the hardest bits was concentrating on a man with a disability finding it increasingly difficult, over a long period of work, to physically put chalk on a blackboard.”

The  conclusion of this review is I love this movie and I love Benedict’s talent.

You can see the movie in youtube, this is the first part.

(second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth)

And for the first time ever, here’s a Benedict Special (snapshots of nothing but him, the thing I usually did only to Cillian’s movie)

Movie Details:

Director:  Phillip Martin
Producers: Jessica Pope
Screenplay: Peter Moffat
Starring:  Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Brandon, Tom Hodgkins, Lisa Dillon, Phoebe Nicholls, Adam Godley, Peter Firth, Tom Ward, John Sessions, Rohan Siva, Matthew Marsh,  Anastasia Hille, Bertie Carvel, Christian Rubeck
Released: 13 april 2004 (BBC One)

Special news on Sherlock in page 2 😉


  1. I really want to watch this. That needs one hell of an actor to play such a role.
    I love A Beautiful Mind btw. I’m a huge Russell Crowe fan and mostly for a beautiful mind. I wasn’t aware before that how good an actor he is. And Jennifer Connely is in it too. You should watch it. 🙂 I think these two movies cannot be compared. I’m very keen on watching this one.

    1. After seeing Benedict in Sherlock…I think he is capable of doing anything. Too bad not many people know him.

      I know Jennifer is in A Beautiful Mind,it is in my to-watched list because Jennifer’s husband is also in it.they actually met and fell in love in during the production of that movie.Beautiful mind is the one that brought Crowe to Oscar nomination, right? I don’t remember whether he won it or not.

      If you had watched Hawking,please let me know what you think of it 🙂


    DAMN! That dude is……whoa!!!! He’s like….the British version of Clark Kent in the pictures!!!! Wow!!!
    I can see why you’re so excited, because…damn! That face!!!
    For a quick second, he reminded me of teenage Freddie Highmore, especially since I’ve just watched his latest movie (The Art of Getting By) just last night. But dang! Benedict looks awesome in here! The quintessential cute-nerd, if I ever see one!

    Okay, now on to the movie. I’m curious to see it now! And what about Sherlock?? When is it going to air?? T___T
    Btw, have you watched him in Stuart: A Life Backwards? It’s a TV show back in 2007, starring him and Tom Hardy. He was great there, but Hardy gave a performance of a lifetime! I highly recommend it! 🙂

    Now let’s just stay silent and let me marvel at those pictures…..

    1. Gyahahaha…I know your comment will be heboh!! That’s why I promoted this post to you!! He was the cool-Benedict in Sherlock and here he becomes the cute-nerd-Benedict. Couldn’t wait to see the spy-Benedict in Tinker, Soldier, Spy…we REALLY have to see the movie together (a bit worried it might not get here tho 😦 ). He will also be in War-Horse, but he turns into the mustache-Benedict…not sure about seeing him in mustache.

      I want to see that movie by Freddie too…I bet he turns into a cute teenager now.

      About the movie…let me know if have watched Hawking. I want to know your opinion…although you are a bit clouded with his cuteness instead of his acting ability 😉
      there is still no date for Sherlock 😦 and I haven’t seen that TVShow. I will look it up later, thanks for telling me about it.

  3. Wow I almost didn’t recognize him in this. I had never even heard of this movie Nov, thanks for bringing it to my attention. I really can’t wait to see ‘Tinker Tailor’ with him and the other great British cast!

    1. It’s an old TVmovie, I guess only his fans knew about it.

      I am so looking forward to see that one too…but I don’t think I’ll be seeing it in cinema tho 😦 there is no sign of Coming Soon in our cinema.

    1. Thank you for reading Katie. I really like this movie…and the actor is just amazing. I think Benedict needs more coverage outside UK…he deserves it.

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