SXSW 2013 Review: HAWKING

By Renee’ Collins

Rating: 5 (Out of 5 Reels)

HAWKING is an extraordinary story of the planet’s most famous living scientist, Stephen Hawking, told for the first time in his own words and by those closest to him (SXSW).

Immediately after I read the synopsis of this film, I knew I had to see it.  I have been fascinated with Hawking and his work for years. This film masterfully and chronologically details Hawking’s life.  Another element which significantly and unquestionably adds to the depth of this film is that it is co-written and narrated mostly by Hawking himself.  It found it interesting to learn that he was diagnosed with a fatal Motor Neuron Disease and given just two years to live while in his twenties. Well, he is now seventy-one years old and continues to teach and make scientific discoveries despite being confined to an electric wheelchair and reliant on others to live day to day.  It is unfathomable to realize what he has accomplished in his lifetime in spite of his illness.

I found this film to be enlightening and inspirational because Hawking did not allow his disease to beat him which is an important lesson for anyone in life.  I also enjoyed several of the vignettes in the film depicting Hawking throughout his life while telling his story.

I learned many things as well as enjoyed the fantastic way in which this film is shot and put together.  I would recommend it to anyone.  When the writer and director came out after the screening they asked the audience to wave and yell hello as one of them was recording the proceedings for Hawking himself because he loves interacting with people; that is fantastic.

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