2 items from 2016
Written & Directed by Matthew Brown
Rating: *****(5 Stars)
How does one describe, let alone cinematically circumscribe ,the life of an unvarnished genius like Srinivasa Ramanujan who at the at the age of 32 had burnt himself out, scorned, smothered and snuffed out by his own unplumbed brilliance.
This is not an easy story to tell. Director Matthew Brown wisely follows the course set down by Robert Kanigel’s biography of Ramanujan. As seen through the prism of poignant artlessness and a belief that the mathematical genius flows from the will of God, true to the somber end to its unrehearsed design, the narrative seems to flow almost by divine ordinance.
The story of a simple human being with a complex mathematical mind that he failed to explain to himself, let alone to the world which marveled at his prodigious skills, »
- Subhash K Jha
A mannered and milquetoast period biopic about the short life of mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan, "The Man Who Knew Infinity" opens with a Bertrand Russell quote that conveniently frames its failings: "Mathematics, rightly viewed, posses not only truth but supreme beauty." Writer-director Matthew Brown ("Ropewalk") has made a handsome and well-meaning testament to a rare man, but his film is all truth and no beauty (and that truth has been strained through the filter of historical revisionism and narrative convenience). Essentially "The Theory of Everything" meets "Good Will Hunting" with a hard colonialist twist, "The Man Who Knew Infinity" begins in 1920, where snooty British academic G.H. Hardy (Jeremy Irons, who's a treat to watch even on auto-pilot) is waxing nostalgic about "the most romantic figure in the recent history of mathematics." He's referring, of course, to Ramanujan (Dev Patel, natch), »
- David Ehrlich
2 items from 2016
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