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David O. Russell
Robert De Niro
Based on the real life story of legendary cryptanalyst Alan Turing, the film portrays the nail-biting race against time by Turing and his brilliant team of code-breakers at Britain's top-secret Government Code and Cypher School at Bletchley Park, during the darkest days of World War II.Written by
Both the burglary at Turing's home and his subsequent investigation for homosexual activity (which would have been referred to legally as "gross indecency") are shown as being investigated by Manchester Police. Turing's home was not in Manchester but in Wilmslow, Cheshire and so both offences would have been investigated by Cheshire Police (or 'Constabulary'); that his subsequent conviction was at Cheshire Quarter Sessions confirms this. See more »
Are you paying attention? Good. If you're not listening carefully you will miss things. Important things. I will not pause, I will not repeat myself, and you will not interrupt me. If you think that because you're sitting where you are and I am sitting where I am that you are in control of what is about to happen, you 're mistaken. I am in control, because I know things that you do not know.
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The story of the breaking of the German ciphers during WWII is a significant one, deserving of an accurate telling. The story of Alan Turing, a key member of the team that developed the methods and machines that broke those ciphers is an important one, also deserving of an accurate telling.
"The Imitation Game" is neither of these films. The story told by this film is watchable, Cumberbatch renders Turing sympathetically and, somewhat to my surprise, Knightley takes the thinly written role of Joan Clarke and turns it into something with a fair bit of heft. However, this film's story takes such liberties with the facts that it really cannot be recommended. This is *not* how the German ciphers were broken and it is not even a reasonable depiction of Turing's life, particularly so when it comes to the atrocious way he was treated after the war.
You will not find Harold Keen or Gordon Welchman in this film, the writers preferring to insinuate that Turing was wholly responsible for the design and building of the bombe machines (except that Hugh Alexander is credited with the idea for improving their working that was actually Welchman's). However, you will find a Soviet spy in Turing's hut when in fact he did not work there. I could go on and list other inaccuracies.
If you are unaware of the stories of Enigma and Turing, you may find this a quite interesting film to watch. If you are aware of these stories I think you may find it difficult to swallow the gross misrepresentations of both.
I consider that filmmakers, when depicting real people or events, have a responsibility to tell the truth and not distort things simply for dramatic effect. When this responsibility is ignored the filmmakers have decided to, in effect, spread lies in the name of entertainment. "The Imitation Game" may be entertaining but it makes this dismal mistake and cannot be recommended.
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