The Imitation Game (2014)
A Review by: Jeff Turner
Dir: Morten Tyldum
Written by: Andrew Hodges, Graham Moore.
Distributed by: Black Bear Pictures, Bristol Automotive
Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch, Matthew Goode, Keira Knightley, Charles Dance, Mark Strong.
Boy, that Bennyhill Rumpelstiltskin sure can act. His turn as genius mathematician and closeted homosexual Alan Turing in THE IMITATION GAME seemed to me early on to have THE FIFTH ESTATE written all over it, I thought it was going to bomb and poor old Bambischnitzel Alfalfa would fade into obscurity. He, and all of the cast and crew made it though! How does THE IMITATION GAME hold up, is it any good? I don’t know because the film kept malfunctioning, which forced me to go complain to the manager, which forced me to miss five minutes. I shall not review a movie that I missed five minutes of, that would be undignified. How dare they for taking away five minutes of my time to watch Santaclaus Toasterstrudel kill it in an Oscar-nominated performance. I bid all of you GOOD DAY!
THE IMITATION GAME follows Turing during the time he served in World War II. While Churchill and the gang were out fighting the Nazi’s, Turing was working on a machine that would crack the device the German’s were using to communicate with one another, known as Enigma. This turns out to be an audacious effort on Turing’s part, as his boss (Charles Dance) starts to look for ways to lose himself of this newfound burden and suspicions begin to mount that Turing might be a soviet spy.
THE IMITATION GAME also follows Turing’s romantic relationship with one of his college classmates, Christopher, as well as Turing’s efforts to connect with the rest of humanity. What I like about these scenes is that while Turing is a nerd, you always have at least some fondness for him, and all of the scenes are very well chosen, each displaying another aspect of Turing’s personality and why he acts the way he does.
The second best performance in THE IMITATION GAME belongs to Keira Knightley, whom I’ve actually never really disliked. She picks a script that matches her talents, giving the best performance she’s given since PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. The film incorporates the strength of the Knightley character, while always making sure it feels organic and never pushy.
The supporting cast is strong as well. Mark Strong does some of his best work yet as a high ranking government official. Matthew Goode is charismatic as Hugh Alexander, one of Turing’s employees. Charles Dance puts on his meanest Tywin Lannister face to portray Turing’s boss.
THE IMITATION GAME is a biopic worth celebrating. Whether or not it’s a photo-realistic depiction is worth debate, but none of these liberties hinder the overall goal of a movie that’s about repressed desire, love, and humanities need for progress. It is a worthy film that you can still see and should.
Suggestion: See it