Crack the code, win the war


DIRECTED BY: Morten Tyldum
WRITTEN BY: Graham Moore & Andrew Hodges
STARRING: Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Rory Kinnear, Allen Leech, Matthew Beard, James Northcote, Charles Dance & Mark Strong

SYNOPSIS: Set in World War II, mathematician Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch) races against time to break the Enigma code with the aide of Britain’s brightest team of cryptographers.


FULL REVIEW: CONTAINS SPOILERS


Bits I Loved

  • The premise is great in itself. I mean the real story behind how World War 2 was shortened by at least two years thanks to the mind of one of the most brilliant mathematicians in history? Whose interest wouldn’t be peaked?
  • The story takes an interesting premise and creates a multi-layered narrative. The cohesion of the emotional story mixed with the facts and historical context make for an amazingly detail and intriguing narrative.
  • The acting was phenomenal. Between Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley the two characters are immensely dynamic and insanely empathetic. It is horrible to see how their stories end up.
  • The writing and dialogue was excellent. I loved the intelligent dialogue and subtle humour.
  • The score is able to perfectly accent the tone of the film.

Bits I Hated

  • The story seemed to dumb down a lot of the concepts, treating the audience like a classroom rather than intelligent open-minded adults.
  • The supporting cast was somewhat one-dimensional outside Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley. Yes some of the characters are expanded beyond this, but a lot of them are rather niche parts which does not do the actors justice.

Review

The Imitation Game is an impressive and intelligent biopic based on the biggest kept secret of World War II. The narrative is riveting from beginning to end with an incredibly rich script filled with brilliant dialogue and subtle humour. The characters for the most part are amazingly dynamic, with an unbelievably real and empathetic performance from Benedict Cumberbatch as mathematician Alan Turing. Keira Knightley and Mark Strong also shine in this dramatic film.

The cohesion in the storyline is phenomenal, particularly the connections between Turing’s childhood and his present day decisions. Naming the machine Christopher after his best friend and first love? Once that is revealed it is hard not to feel absolutely horrible about how Turing’s life turned out after the great mark he made on the biggest event in human history.

Granted the supporting cast is a bit underdeveloped and the story seems a bit dumbed down for an audience that could easily comprehend the science, The Imitation Game delivers a strong and brilliantly tragic biopic that is certain to be a big contender during award season.


Oscar Nominations?

  • Best Picture (Guaranteed)
  • Best Director (Guaranteed)
  • Best Actor – Benedict Cumberbatch (Guaranteed)
  • Best Supporting Actress – Keira Knightley (Guaranteed)
  • Best Costume Design (Darkhorse)
  • Best Production Design (Darkhorse)
  • Best Editing (Likely)
  • Best Original Score (Guaranteed)
  • Best Adapted Screenplay (Guaranteed)

Verdict

1 = Fair 2 = Good 3 = Very Good 4 = Excellent

★★★★ – Premise

★★★☆ – Story

★★★★ – Characters

★★★★ – Visual Effects

★★★★ – Dialogue

★★★★ – Visuals

★★★★ – Soundtrack


★★★★★★★★★★  10/10 – Recommend


What did you think of The Imitation Game? Let me know in the comments!

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