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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Boys (and Girl) of Bletchley Park

My last review of the year goes to 'The Imitation Game,' based on the true story of how British mathematician Alan Turing and a handful of other code-breakers broke the infamous German "Enigma" code.   Considered to be unbreakable in its time due to its 159 trillion possible permutations and the short timeframe the code-breakers had to work with before having to start all over again thanks to the daily changing of keys, the effort to break the "Enigma Code" is one of those untold stories of World War II that many people - like yours truly - find endlessly fascinating.
 
In what may very well be his best performance to date, Benedict Cumberbatch got his eccentric genius act down to a 't' as Alan Turing.  All the usual stereotypes about geniuses are evident in his portrayal of Turing: socially awkward, little sense of humor, intensely focused, logical to a fault, flawed but brilliant.  We've seen it all before in movies like 'A Beautiful Mind,' but Cumberbatch infuses his character with so much charisma and intensity that he single-handedly elevates the movie above a simple biopic set during WWII.  Keira Knightley also shined in her role as Joan Clarke, a genius of a woman herself who's trying to fit into a man's world and serving as "ying" to Turing's "yang."
 
Engrossing, well written and filled with period flavor and detail, 'The Imitation Game' is a great story about a group of unsung heroes of WWII whose contributions only came to light 50 years after the end of the Second World War.  And with this I thank you for visiting and wish you all a happy (and prosperous) 2015.  See you next year.
 
Grade: A
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