The Invisible Woman (2013) Poster


The Invisible Woman

Starring: Ralph Fiennes and

Felicity Jones

Directed by: Ralph Fiennes

Rating: 4 stars

The Invisible Woman tells the story of the epic, over a decade long love affair between Nelly Ternan  and Charles Dickens. Based on the non-fiction title of the same name by author Claire Tomalin, The film introduces us to Nelly Ternan, an eighteen year old actress performing in Dickens The Frozen Deep. An admirer of his already, their relationship spans thirteen years, where in that time Dickens separates from his wife and Nelly drops into obscurity.  Through this film and book is Nelly’s story told; and is she remembered.

This film was excellent. I have been a fan of Felicity Jones since her indie movie Like Crazy with Anton Yelchin. This bears no resemble. Her performance is raw, emotional, and relatable. You can truly feel everything she feels. Her performance was great. Ralph “Rafe” Fiennes also gave a phenomenal performance. They fed off each other’s energy so well. I can’t imagine two other actors playing these parts. Fiennes played Dickens the way I’ve always imagined him to be like. He was jovial, funny, and very serious. Fiennes brought real artistry to the role.

As much as I loved both performances, the movie started off a little slow for me. I didn’t truly get into the movie until close to the middle. Then, I was riveted. I was entranced by the performances and what was taking place. What made this movie unique was the perspective. It starts off, briefly, with Nelly’s life after Dickens’ death. She is married with children. The next scene goes right into the past, a seamless transition. The movie goes back and forth between Nelly’s life Before/During Dickens and after Dickens’ death which not only added depth to the story, but to the character as well.

I believe I teared at the end. I won’t ruin it, but there is a beautiful quote Nell says about Dickens to a man when he finds out her true identity and relation to Charles Dickens. I’ll keep the quote to myself but will offer this spoiler, if you read Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, she slightly quotes the end of the story and fits it in with her life with him. It’s really powerful.

If you are a fan of historical movies, indie movies, or of either actor this film is for you. I really did love it.  My only problem was with the beginning, but I got over that. It’s a beautiful film not to be missed. It’s a shame it is so underrated. Fiennes did a fantastic job directing. The cinematography and editing was perfect. I hope you check it out.