The latest cover of Time is a special genius issue, and Benedict Cumberbatch is on the cover. Hey, I love the guy too, but I don’t know if he’s exactly a genius.
As it turns out, Cumberbatch is on the cover of the genius issue because he’s playing a genius in The Imitation Game, the story of Alan Turing, the pioneer of computer science. The Weinstein Company is making a big push for Cumberbatch to win an Oscar, and like The Theory of Everything, it could be a great epic about a geek who changed the world.
The Seattle Times headlined their report, “Benedict Cumberbatch makes brainiacs look sexy,” and Cumberbatch told NPR this movie is far more complex than your usual biopic. Turing was openly gay when it was illegal in England to be a homosexual, and Cumberbatch added that the script, like trying to crack a code itself, is a “beautifully complex unraveling through time…the unraveling of both the problem and the man, himself, trying to solve the problem.”
Cumberbatch added that what’s beautiful about the screenplay is “utterly uncompromising. There’s no vanity, you’re not asked to like the character. You’re introduced to him, warts and all. He is difficult; he’s very stubborn and arrogant. But there’s a sort of naïve guilelessness about the whole thing…He is utterly brilliant, he knows it, and he’s been told that, and he doesn’t mind talking about it.”
And in reviewing Cumberbatch’s performance, critic David Edelstein notes that Cumberbatch “lifts [the film] far above the standard biopic formula. He’s award-caliber strange.”