When dealing with the subject of World War II, it’s easy for filmmakers to get lost in visceral action scenes or bloody battles and forget the importance of figures who truly pulled the strings.
The Imitation Game, however, manages to center an entire film about these very people, in what is one of the most memorable biopics to be made in recent history. It’s a tense, well shot thriller that shines a light on one of the 20th century’s most tragic heroes.
The Imitation Game focuses on Alan Turing, the brilliant mathematician, along with a few other code-breakers, charged with the task of decrypting Nazi Germany’s Enigma Machine. While many are unaware of the story of these people and their contributions to the war, they had a drastic impact on the outcome of it and their work is not to be forgotten.
Turing is portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch, and easily demonstrates why he is one of the most acclaimed actors of our time. Every single feeling is not only carried in his voice, but also conveyed with subtle facial and bodily expressions few actors manage to adopt in easier roles.
The emotional strength of the film is not only found there, however. The movie is bolstered by scenes demonstrating the collateral damage of war, which statistics fail to show. It’s much easier to bring an end to the lives of thousands when their entire existence is represented as numbers on a page. Even Turing’s character suffers heavily as the film progresses, and his struggles with social warfare juxtapose the battle he helped fight.
Although, it is hard to judge, positively or negatively, so many of the people and events that take place within the film, given how much the historical accuracy of it has been disputed. My biggest complaint about it has to be the fact that it claims to be based on a true story, yet so many pivotal scenes have been deemed fabricated or heavily exaggerated. T
he Imitation Game is still a fantastic film, deserving of attention from World War II buffs and casual viewers alike, but don’t expect the completely factual story of Alan Turing or the remarkable things he did.