The Imitation Game

I just watched this movie for the second time and it was just as fantastic as the first. We watched it with Daniel and he really enjoyed it and indeed I think it’s a good movie to get kids interested in mathematics.

Alan Turing was a mathematician and a war hero. He broke Enigma, the German cryptography machine, and in doing so is said to have shortened the war by several years. He also invented one of the first stored program computers.

What is particularly sad in the movie and in real life is that he was never honoured or even acknowledged for the work he did. Even worse, he was convicted for being a homosexual after the war and forced to either go to prison or take hormonal drugs. He chose the drugs and committed suicide a year later. In 2013 Queen Elizabeth II granted him a posthumous pardon. Why did it take her so long? And why was homosexuality illegal in the first place? It makes no sense. It’s sad that a genius and a man who gave so much to the world was treated so poorly and made so miserable.

I despair when I see people today, more than 50 years after Alan Turing’s suicide, still making life miserable for homosexuals by preventing them from getting married. Alan Turing has taught us that the world needs all kinds of minds and being different is not bad or immoral. Can’t we just be kind to one another?

Benedict Cumberbatch is brilliant as Alan Turing. He’s probably my favourite actor at the moment and if I wasn’t already married I’d be offering to have his children. Kiera Knightly has a leading role in The Imitation Game and is equally superb although I have no desire to have her children 🙂

4 responses to “The Imitation Game”

  1. Isabel is a big Cumberbatch fan so we have watched this! Definitely good to have a Maths based movie.

  2. Rachel,
    For those who enjoyed the movie ” The Imitation Game”, the book that inspired it is ‘” Alan Turing : The Enigma” by Alan Hodges. There are also a number of excellent books concerning Bletchley Park where Turing and the Codebreakers worked.
    It should be recalled that in presenting Turing’s remarkable work, a number of liberties were taken with the Bletchley Park and Enigma history. In particular the excellent contribution of the young Polish mathematicians who first cracked the German Enigma in the mid-thirties and handed French and British intelligence (including Turing) their findings should have been acknowledged. When the movie was shown in Poland some audiences reportedly booed the omission.
    Notwithstanding that, one should give the screen writers some artistic licence ! It is a terrific movie.

    1. Oh I didn’t know about the Polish contribution to cracking Enigma. There’s some info about it here if anyone else is interested –

  3. If you’d like to hear another take on this film, please take a few minutes to check out my film review blog! I would love to hear any feedback you have to offer me. Thanks !

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