The Imitation Game is based on the true story of Alan Turing, the man who broke the enigma code. The story it self cannot be critiqued, instead the way that it is told. To put it in the simplest of terms: it is heart wrenchingly beautiful. To say that the acting was impeccable is an understatement. As others would attest to, Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance as Alan Turing was flawless. He plays overly intelligent, awkward, yet cocky characters to perfection. His ability, along with the other actors’, to move the audience without words is astounding; the close-up shots of Cumberbatch’s face while running are a great example of this. The audience is able to feel Alan Turing’s struggle of having to hide himself and of imitating something that he is not. Keira Knightley played the perfect counter part to Cumberbatch. She played an intelligent woman who accepted that Alan was different. Another actor who stood out to me in this film is Alex Lawther. He did a wonderful job in playing a young Alan Turing.
The cinematography was perfectly done for the film. There were some shots of actual footage from the time period, as well as some very well done recreations of the toll that the war took on civilians. In particular, the shot of young school kids in a row, each wearing gas masks, stuck out to me.
The script was also very well done. I loved to witty banter and dialogue. A big theme of the movie was repeated in a tasteful way through the line: “Sometimes it is the people no one imagines anything of who do the things that no one can imagine.” The movie also demonstrated the idea of normal and abnormal, which was very refreshing. I found it extremely funny that for Alan Turing to create his team to assist him in the most prevalent problem in the world at that time, he used a common crossword puzzle. The way the story flowed made the audience feel like they could decode the Enigma with the characters.
The one flaw of this movie is that it can be hard to follow at times, but this is also another beauty of the film, because the film makers wanted it to feel like the audience was inside Alan Turing’s brain, and I’m sure that his brain wasn’t perfectly organized either. It is also mentioned in the beginning in a voice over from Cumberbatch that you must pay attention or else you will become lost.
It fascinated me that this story had been kept a secret for fifty years. I’m so glad that this story is now being shared with the world and Alan Turing is gaining the recognition and respect that he deserves. Overall, the movie is absolutely brilliant, extremely well made, and perfect for anyone who likes a good puzzle. I would rate this movie a 5 out of 5 stars.