Wednesday, 11 February 2015

The Imitation Game (2014)


Alan Turing: Are you paying attention? Good. If you are not listening carefully, you will miss things. Important things. I will not pause, I will not repeat myself, and you will not interrupt me. You think that because you're sitting where you are, and I am sitting where I am, that you are in control of what is about to happen. You're mistaken. I am in control, because I know things that you do not know.
Alan Turing: What I will need from you now is a commitment. You will listen closely, and you will not judge me until I am finished. If you cannot commit to this, then please leave the room. But if you choose to stay, remember you chose to be here. What happens from this moment forward is not my responsibility. It's yours. Pay attention.

Here lies the Enigma: What do you get when you add a British incredible actor plus an equally British talanted cast to portray the team that broke Enigma during the Second World War, alongside with an underlying backstory of the prosecution of homosexuals during the 1950s England? A profound intriguing film that shows you the trials of a homosexual who was denied to be acknowledge for his brilliance in aiding WWII, but was otherwise prosecuted for what his sexual orientation was. 

'The Imitation Game' is the based on the true story of legendary cryptanalyst Alan Turing, the film portrays the nail-biting race against time by Turing and his brilliant team of code-breakers at Britain's top-secret Government Code and Cypher School at Bletchley Park, during the darkest days of World War II. (

This film goes out in the heart of the story; the streneous path that Professor Turing faced, after the end of WWII. It all boils down to Benedict Cumberbatch's performance and how provocatively ludicrous his ideas were the fundamental reason for breaking the impossible Enigma. Cumberbatch, who in recent years has proven to be somewhat of a glorified genius in his portrayal as the equally brilliant but insane Sherlock Holmes in the BBC series, he's once again cast to portray the insane genius of Turning; the profound amazement in his performance derives from his eloquence to make you pay attention to his thought process. The portrayal takes on a different dynamics as it not only focusses on his mathematical genius to break the code, but the hidden truth that Turing was a homosexual. Cumberbatch gave the role a horrowing meaning of what it felt like to be ashamed of what he is, to be living in the shadows, long after he would be considered the catalyst for ending the worst war that his humanity has ever seen. 

Grasping all the messages on how horrendous it was for someone who was a homosexual to live at those times, this film lacks empathy I believe. Albeit the remarakbly sad story of Turing, the script lacks the emotional stamina to make you break down in overwhelming tears of what occurred to Turning long after the war. What's lacking though in empathy due to pacing issues, makes up for in brilliant performances that enagage the viewer of the injustice and shameful acts that were exercised upon the real Alan Turing. 

The film engrosses the viewer only by the sadness of the true story, but it's technical and more practical logistical executions are within a mediocre standard of that of an independent film that's trying to find it's niche. 

Regardless, it is without a doubt that 'The Imitation Game' holds its reigns high up due to the evocative performances. Hence it's also nominations for a Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress. A notable mention to the ever struggling growth as a serious actress of Keira Knightley, who after years of costume drama portrayals seems to have hit the target in her portrayal of Turing's trusted friend/colleague and brief fiance in the film. 

This is an incredible story, a story that has been hidden in the shadows waiting to be told. It was only a matter of finding its narrative storyteller that would enfold the essence of Alan Turing's life events and what it means for humanity. The transcedance of acceptance and human justice resonate throughout the film's duration. Be sure to acknowledge Turing's brilliant work when you watch it, but be even more prepared to aknowledge the man behind the code. 


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