‘Imitation Game’ Site Bletchley Park Recreates WWII Britain

20 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Finest hour: Bletchley Park basks in glory moment as ‘Imitation Game’ makes its story known.

Well, TV presenter Jimmy Kimmel put that very concept to the test in this inspired sketch, following his suggestion that Benedict has ‘the greatest name ever given to a human being’.“The Imitation Game” is a much smaller release than “American Sniper;” and while I have my doubts that it will ever come to Hays, it it nevertheless an incredible piece of filmmaking that tells the riveting story of the breaking of the Nazi Enigma code during World War II. Cue the man himself introducing himself under a variety of different monikers – ranging from insurance salesman Gary Miller through to, er, The Hamburglar, as he tried to shrug off that whole ‘Benedict’ thing. Benedict Cumberbatch leads a stunning ensemble of remarkable British actors including Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Mark Strong and Charles Dance – each of which is exceptional in their own right.

There’s even a brief moment when the Oscar nominee tries to convince us he is The Princess Bride’s Inigo Montoya (and is not fooling us for a minute), not to mention George Costanza, Magic Mike and, er Guardians Of The Galaxy’s Groot. Though eclipsed by attractions like the British Museum and Stonehenge, the museum at Bletchley Park expects a surge in visitors as a result of “The Imitation Game,” a movie about Alan Turing, a computer science pioneer and architect of the effort to crack Nazi Germany’s Enigma cipher.

While sitting at a bar, Cumberbatch stifled his giggles as he introduced himself as “Chad,” “Certified Public Accountant David Weinstein,” “2 Chainz,” “The Gooch,” “The Hamburglar,” “Jermajesty Jackson” and a slew of other names that just didn’t have the same effect as his own. To make a room filled with mathematicians, chess champions and cryptanalysts feel as important and as thunderous as Allied soldiers landing on the shores of Normandy is no small feat. The oppression that so many members of “The Greatest Generation” rose to fight with everything they had, and the oppression that was allowed to continue, and has yet to be resolved. “American Sniper” and “The Imitation Game” are two of the eight films nominated for Best Picture at this year’s Academy Awards.

Convicted in 1952 on a charge of “gross indecency” stemming from his relationship with another man, Turing was stripped of his security clearance and forced to take estrogen to neutralize his sex drive. An 8 million pound ($12.2 million) renovation program completed last year made it possible to see the site as it was during the war — sparking a visiting by the former Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, whose grandmother — and grandmother’s twin sister — worked at Bletchley during the war. Bletchley’s visitor count jumped almost 30 percent last year following the broadcast of the “The Bletchley Circle,” an ITV series broadcast on PBS in the United States about female code-breakers who investigate crime. Katherine Lynch, Bletchley’s spokeswoman, expects visitors to increase with the Oscar-nominated film’s success, particularly because the museum is less than an hour from London.

It includes a sports coat worn by Cumberbatch, the bar used in a party scene and the film’s replica of Turing’s prototype Bombe machine, developed to help decode messages. Visitors can see Turing’s office, complete with the coffee cup chained to a radiator and poster of Winston Churchill urging his country: “Let us go forward together.” The furnishings aren’t originals — they would be behind glass cases otherwise. But somehow the lack of ropes or glass to hold visitors back makes it more intimate and personal — as if the war ended and things were just frozen in place.

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