“Unquestionably and indisputably, without a shadow of a doubt, Eddie Redmayne is the best thing about Jupiter Ascending,” writes Grantland‘s Kevin Lincoln. “Cast as the villain, Balem Abrasax, Redmayne plays the role as one part sexual deviant, one part reality-show judge, and a little bit Richard III. Without any explanation, he delivers almost all of his lines in a two-pack-a-day voyeur whisper; the rest of the dialogue he shouts, like a crazy person.
“I don’t believe, as some do, that Jupiter Ascending will hurt Redmayne’s chances [of] winning the Oscar for his portrayal of Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything. If anything, it’ll help: Any actor who will speak like that for the scope of an entire shoot will clearly suffer for his art.
“In a movie that otherwise appears to be taking itself seriously, Redmayne is unadulterated camp, and it’s glorious. The moments when he’s onscreen aren’t just better than everything else; they feel like a guide to what the movie could’ve been — a heightened and hysterical dip into the absurd, rather than an overdressed and underdeveloped fairy tale.
“At the least, it shows Redmayne’s great instincts. Just like Tom Hardy, one of our very best young actors, he realizes that the one foolproof way to improve a bad guy is to speak in a nearly incomprehensible accent. Jupiter Ascending may leave theaters soon, but Redmayne’s pervy mumble will live forever.