Film Review: A Lost WWII Hero Remembered in Slick Thriller ‘The Imitation Game’

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Average: 4.3 (4 votes)

CHICAGO – The heroism of World War II codebreaker Alan Turing has been lost in time. Partly due to the secrecy of his mission within the British military in World War II, but also because of the intolerance that erased him soon after his incredible accomplishments. The story of Turing, a man who helped the Allies win the war but was then persecuted for his closeted homosexuality, is given a long-overdue major feature treatment in the polished ‘Imitation Game’. Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

“The Imitation Game” follows the extremely-focused math genius as he is brought on board by the British military in 1940 to break the German’s infamous Enigma code. The stakes created by Enigma were impossible, in that a code had to be cracked in less than a day before it would completely change, and everything had to start all over. Turing is assisted by a team of other mathematicians (played by Allen Leech, Matthew Goode, Matthew Beard). While the team keeps hitting snags, Turing also seeks to find new talent, and brings onboard a woman named Joan Clarke (Keira Knightley).

When the team makes a breakthrough on Enigma, the drama of their time working secretly during World War II only begins. They are faced with the conflict of what to do with an abundance of new information that could save a lot of lives, but also blow the British’s secret about their current status on Enigma. Meanwhile, Alan hopes to keep his sexual orientation secret, which is considered a crime basically as worse as being a spy.

In one of the year’s best performances, Cumberbatch introduces Turing to the world, and proves his cinematic guff with an inhabited performance that he rides to the very tragic end of Turing’s tale. Cumberbatch stages the lost historical figure as a mind that is constantly at work, his precise facial mannerisms and stumbling dialogue creating an instant impression of how brilliant a human being could be. Cumberbatch treats his crucial role with equal sharpness and sensitivity, imbuing charisma on an inward character, and fashioning Turing as a magnetic underdog against flatly opposing bosses and confrontational teammates.

“The Imitation Game” opened in Chicago on December 12th. Featuring Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Allen Leech, Matthew Beard, and Mark Strong. Written by Graham Moore. Directed by Morten Tyldum. Rated “PG-13”

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “The Imitation Game”

‘The Imitation Game
The Imitation Game
Photo credit: The Weinstein Company

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “The Imitation Game”

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