x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Insight into the private life of Charles Darwin

In Creation we see a deeply troubled Charles Darwin agonising over the writing of his seminal work On the Origin of Species.

Creation 

Director: Jon Amiel 

Starring: Paul Bettany, Jennifer Connelly, Ian Kelly, Guy Henry

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In Creation we see a deeply troubled Charles Darwin (Paul Bettany) agonising over the writing of his seminal work On the Origin of Species

Bettany gives a subtle, considered performance, playing a man tormented by both the magnitude of his as-yet-unpublished ideas and by a (misplaced) guilt over the death of his daughter, Annie (Martha West), to scarlet fever some years earlier. As Darwin is increasingly torn between his scientific convictions and his fear of the effect that this will have on both his marriage to the deeply religious Emma (Jennifer Connelly) and upon society as a whole, he becomes ever more estranged from his family. 

It is only the inquisitive Annie, returning to him as a memory, ghost or hallucination, who can help the agitated Darwin not only to accept the worth of his ideas, but to realise that they must be recorded. For the most part, Creation manages to steer clear of melodrama and over-sentimentality, while giving a real insight into the personal life of the man whose pivotal work changed our perception of nature. 

This thoughtful film isn't one to choose if you're in the mood for something fast-paced or action-packed. It is, however, an interesting, intelligent and considered biopic, that leaves you feeling satisfied.