Tarsem Singh has always been one for visually dazzling films. His …
The mysterious and secretive figure of Alan Turing has undergone something of a political and cultural renaissance in the UK over the past few years. A young mathematic prodigy, Oxford graduate, and cryptographer par excellence, he was ushered into the ultra top secret Bletchley Park programme during the Second World War and tasked with the impossible: to break the German military codes through a captured sequencer which could potentially offer billions of responses to any clandestine communication. Socially incompetent and ruthlessly dedicated, Turing willingly threw himself into the arena of cerebral combat, along the way erecting much of the intellectual and theoretical infrastructure of the modern computing world. But as a closeted homosexual his treatment at the hands of the authorities in the post-war period should cause the great British bulldog to hang its head in shame, with he and his team’s contribution to the continuation of civilisation remaining cloaked for over half acentury due to the Official Secrets Act. Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown would later make an official public apology on behalf of the British government for “the appalling way he was treated,” while the Queen granted him a posthumous pardon on Christmas Eve 2013.
Ah, period piece films. It’s kind of a silly term if you think about it, since any historical time ever is technically a period, the film itself being the artistic piece of the equation. These films don’t really constitute a genre on their own, and they’re most commonly referring to something in the far past, though certainly not exclusively. Some people hear of a film referred to as a “period piece,” and the first things that come to mind are nobility and dogmatic rulers, oppressed women, and way-paving.