|Ralph Fiennes & Felicity Jones in The Invisible Woman|
Based on Claire Tomalin’s popular biographical book The Invisible Woman: The Story of Nelly Ternan and Charles Dickens, it tells the riveting and rich story of a late in life affair that popular author Charles Dickens (Ralph Fiennes), then aged 45, had with 18 year old Nelly Ternan (Felicity Jones), a would be actress whom he met when she replaced her sister in a play he was producing. Slowly falling in love with her – something evident to her loving mother (Kristin Scott Thomas) and two sisters, Dickens has to navigate a censorious Victorian society, which would never countenance the relationship and deal with his wife Catherine (Joanna Scanlan), mother of his eight children, with whom he has long fallen out of love. The film begins more than ten years after Dickens has passed on in 1870, where a troubled Nelly, prone to striding along the beach near where she lives as if possessed of demons, is causing a near spectacle of herself and forcing her loving and decent husband George (Tom Burke) to despair of their relationship. Slowly, Fiennes, working from Abi Morgan’s delicate screenplay, peels back the layers of Nelly’s disturbances and brings us into Dickens' world, one just as complex, emotional and dark as any of his great and lasting novels. Desperately hoping to make a go of it with the beautiful and strong willed Nelly, Dickens finds that even as the author of some of his country’s most acclaimed works, Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, Little Dorrit, and a cultural superstar of his time – much in demand for lectures, reading and autograph sessions – he cannot, dare not, declare his love for Nelly publicly, much less live with her as he so desires.