Creation Movie to Tell Charles Darwin’s Story July 20, 2009

Creation Movie to Tell Charles Darwin’s Story

A movie based on the life of Charles Darwin — ironically, called Creationwill get its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 10th.

As if the story wasn’t enticing enough, Darwin’s wife Emma is played by Jennifer Connelly (who is also the real-life wife of Paul Bettany, the actor who plays Darwin. Got that?):


A Beautiful Mind, Hulk, and this? She’s causing nerdgasms everywhere.

I see a couple downsides to the film.

Inevitably, when the movie premieres in America, there will be protests by evangelical Christians. And the advertising will surely point out how “controversial” this theory is — it’d be the smart way to go in terms of marketing.

Of course there’s no “controversy” about evolution at all in the minds of intelligent, educated, scientifically-literate people.

The other downside is that this movie will probably focus less on the science than the relationship between Darwin and his wife.

So instead of being an awesome science movie, it’ll be a mediocre romantic one.

I hope I’m wrong.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Greg B

    From the preview, it seems like a balance between Darwin with his theory and his wife with her faith. She wants him to be true to himself and his research, but to do that would attack the faith she holds dear. Classic catch 22 struggle.

    It may become one of the ultimate films on the social controversy ignited by his research. (next to Inherit the Wind and .. I dunno… Jurassic Park?)

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Is Ben Stein in the cast?

  • Since the popular culture always has Darwin depicted as an old man, it might be nice to present a picture of Darwin as a younger man and quite human. This is another movie I’m looking forward to seeing.

  • I’m optimistic about this movie, I’d like to see a really well done biopic about Darwin. It may focus more on the relationship but I hope on a good balance between the two. Darwin was a person not an impersonal science machine, seeing his human side portrayed is a good thing.

  • Sid

    Can’t wait for this movie!

  • David D.G.

    It may be a fine movie for all I know, but the title is extremely, excruciatingly irritating because it suggests a focus (and conclusion) that is utterly at odds with (the truth about) the film’s subject matter. It makes about as much sense as making a movie about God creating Earth and its creatures and giving Adam and Eve domain over them in the Garden of Eden, and then giving it a title like The Origin of Species — technically germane, but absolutely the wrong application of such a title.

    ~David D.G.

  • I’m sure the movie is supposed to be about Darwin losing his faith with the development of his theory and the strain this caused his marriage as his wife was very devout. It’s looking at the facts and not the scripture for truths and the troubles it brings. I think this is going to be very close to bone for many people, especially those who are in the closet about their atheism.

    At least, that’s my hope. I’m also a sucker for a good love story.

  • Epistaxis

    Ooh, hot incest action!

    Also, insert “Wedgwood” pun here. (Or did I just?)

  • «bønez_brigade»

    Useless trivia:
    The dude playing the part of the Bulldog previously played that of a Turdblossom.

  • Delphine

    🙁 She’s hot.

  • Tony

    I didn’t know that Paul Bettany was married to my first ever crush, Sarah from Labyrinth. Jammy bugger.

  • I’ve been a fan of Ms. Connelly since Labyrinth.

  • JT

    I’ve been a fan of Ms. Connelly since Once Upon a Time in America – I was 13 so it’s all good 😉 .

    I’m not that excited about this film however

    – Director’s Statement
    From Recorded Picture Company, producers of such films as nine-time Academy Award winner The Last Emperor and Sexy Beast comes CREATION.

    Part ghost story, part psychological thriller, part heart-wrenching love story CREATION is the story of Charles Darwin and the single most explosive idea in history. Darwin’s great, still controversial, book The Origin of Species depicts nature as a battleground. In CREATION the battleground is a man’s heart.

    Seriously – ghost story. No thanks.

  • nontheist

    PZ had a piece about this a month or so ago. Creationists are plentiful in the studio that is producing this film. For the most part the Website portrays the film as a fair telling of the story and the site itself clearly leans toward the creationist side, but I guess we’ll have to see when it’s released.

  • Heidi

    I’m with Tony & Science Pundit. She was in Labyrinth. She can do no wrong.

    My crush was on Bowie, though. lol.

  • Faemorpheus


    That website doesn’t seem to have any info on the movie above. It has some other Darwin movie but not this one.

    That website is for Christian Ministries International. Not the movie “Creation”.

  • It would actually be somewhat of a good idea to focus on Darwin’s life. It would show what could have been in Darwin’s mind when he wrote the origin and it could show people how wrong creationist are about darwin being evil and stuff. It all depends on how it plays out.

  • timalbi

    Seems to me the focus of this movie is all wrong and an opportunity (predictably) has been lost.

    Those immersed in the detail of evolutionary biology or its intellectual development have moved well beyond the banal and infantile battle of ideas between science/atheism and god/creationism. The real fascination is how did Darwin discover “his” theory of evolution? In particular, what and how profound was the role of Arthur Russel Wallace in discovering the most revolutionary insights in human history? And what kind of man was Darwin who, arguably, conspired with his friends in the scientific establishment to steal the breathtaking and breakthrough theories of this almost unknown and impecunious scientist?

    That’s the real story – and this movie seems likely to hardly touch on it. Instead, it will be a sympathetic story that builds on the conventional myths of “Darwin the man”, who struggled against his own upbringing and his wife’s faith before being able to publish “his” theory. Might it not be that he failed to publish for 20 years because his theory of evolution was plain wrong or at best incomplete – until Wallace came along and voluteered the missing links in “Darwinism”?

    The reality might therefore be very different from the conventional “Darwin story” that this film seems destined to tell. The “truth” about Darwin vs Wallace, rather than Darwinism vs Creationism is the real plot but will remain, for now at least, the greatest story never told.

  • IsawitintheUK

    David G, the title refers to the creation of the book, and I think is quite apt. It’s a good movie–mostly focuses on his emotional state with relationships and a child, but also a bit on the science (with some great nature photography). I recommend it!

  • John Billings

    The movie “Creation” has come out, to rave reviews, as you probably know; but it is censored in the USA. I can find it only in Boston and LA; nowhere in the South. So the religious have taken my movie; I will take their gods.

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