Monday, November 24, 2014
THE IMITATION GAME tells the true story of a British mathematician (guess who) who broke the code of the Nazi Enigma machine that essentially allowed us to defeat the Germans in World War II. So Cumberbatch is sort of the John Wayne of nerds. Also on hand are Keira Knightley (can I be a Knightleybitch?), and two Sunday night quality TV faves – the guy who plays Finn on THE GOOD WIFE and the guy who plays Tom on DOWNTON ABBEY.
The Weinstein Company produces it so it has a shot. But believe me, if it were directed by Spielberg there would be handsome glossy programs handed out at all industry screenings and we would be bludgeoned into making this the frontrunner. We would be told in no uncertain terms that it’s “important.” A smart, entertaining movie isn’t enough. And getting director Morten Tyldum to go on Charlie Rose is not a big whoop.
Whether THE IMITATION GAME is sexy enough for an ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY exclusive behind-the-scenes on-the-set profile (Cumberbatch’s stock has probably plummeted now that he’s engaged) or an ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT exclusive behind-the-scenes on-the-set featurette remains to be seen. But fortunately, Spielberg isn’t coming out with some three-hour epic starring Daniel Day-Lewis as Winston Churchill so there may be hope.
If you think encrypting a code with 159,000,000,000,000 possibilities is hard, just try making a riveting screenplay out of it. Kudos to Graham Moore. Cumberbatch and Knightley are worth listening to as well as looking at. And director Mortem Tyldum (sure to become a household name) turned what could have been a two-hour eye chart into a cinematic delight.
THE IMITATION GAME – all it needs is a catchy tagline. How about…?
WAR IS HELL… TO THE THIRD POWER
GOD IS MY COSINE
Update: A reader made an excellent point. I write a wonderful review about a hero mathematician whose name has been ignored and then I never mentioned his name. Alan Turing. My extreme bad. His name deserves to be over the title. Alan Turing.
By Ken Levine at 6:00 AM