Number 4 - The Imitation Game
The poster to the left features a quote at the top that summarizes it for me. "Benedict Cumberbatch is outstanding." Yeah. He is. And he's different from so many other roles he's played. This isn't Sherlock Holmes with a stutter. This isn't nice Khan. This isn't Smaug as a gay genius. Cumberbatch becomes Alan Turing in this movie.
There were some pretty amazing performances this year, and I look forward to the Best Actor noms coming out later this week. Even through Steve Carell, Jake Gyllenhaal, Eddie Redmayne, and David Oyelowo were all amazing (and those should be your five nominations), I think this is the better movie.
If I have one complaint about The Imitation Game for me it's that I would have liked to have seen more of the Enigma cracking. I wanted a crack at the puzzle. Most of that work is done on unseen papers and other gadgets. But I might be too nerdy for the general audiences.
There are a lot of war movies, obviously. But I don't think there have been quite enough war movies that don't really feature much of the fighting. This movie does have some great scenes showing the Blitz, but those are more plot points. While a lot of these movies feature some really brave and memorable men and women and special effects fighting, this movie shows who really won the war.
But just like modern day vets, Turing wasn't treated like much of a hero. That leads to the heart wrenching ending of the movie. This guy who helped win World War II and pretty much invented the computer got a pretty crappy deal. There have been several attempts over the past few years to place Turing in his rightful place in history, especially now that we know about his success in breaking Enigma. I think The Imitation Game is another huge step in putting his name up where it should be in the world's lexicon.