Accuracy, Truth and Pictorial Reality in the Story told in “The Imitation Game” – notes of a conversation with Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley – by Gary S. Smolker

February 17, 2015 (4:30 A.M., PST)

Last night I attended “A conversation with Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley” sponsored and organized by “The New York Times” and The Toronto International Film Festival.

Below is a copy of the email correspondence that I initiated after that.

I have a lot more to say about Benedict Cumberbatch and “The Imitation Game.”

Best regards,


Gary S. Smolker, Publisher

Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog



Tuesday, February 17, 2015 (4:30 a.m., PST)

Confirming we are meeting for brunch today at Solley’s in Van Nuys at 11:30 a.m.
I think if we videotaped our conversation and then uploaded it to YouTube that would be a public service.
One of the big topics during the conversation last night was “truth” – the accuracy of the story told in the movie “The Imitation Game.”
Keira Knightley’s answer to that question was spell binding.
Benedict Cumberbatch’s answer to that question was spell-binding and brilliant.
I wanted to jump out of my seat and tell everyone on the stage (Knightley, Cumberbatch and Buckley) what Jose Ortega y Gasset said about psychological mechanics in his many essays and books.
By means of ideas we see the world.  
We possess of reality nothing but the ideas we have succeeded in forming about it.
Any way, you and I are experts in the way the truth is told.
I am sure the “elite” and those who think they belong to the “elite” would love to hear what we have to say about that.
I will be taking notes at our brunch today.
I wish our conversation at brunch was videotaped and then uploaded to YouTube.
By the way, here is what Jose Ortega y Gasset said about “art”: The aim of painting is to furnish a fuller and more complete view of things than can be obtained in the ordinary intercourse with them.
In essence that/this is how both Knightley and Cumberbatch answered the question –
  • Knightley – There are time constraints, i.e., the length of the movie.
  • Cumberbatch – People go to see films about reality, not literal truth but a narrative journey that gets to the truth.  Films are a “pictorial reality” that create a deeper understanding of the truth.
I could go on and on and on.
And, I am sure both of us will during our brunch today.
During the conversation, Cumberbatch said his goal is, “to honor the legacy we are passing on.”
Cumberbatch made one absolutely brilliantly astute comment after another during the conversation.
By the way, I posted my article on “The Upside of Feeling Down” on my blog, “The Gary S Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” at yesterday afternoon.
See you soon.

—–Original Message—–
From: Lou
To: Gary Smolker <>
Sent: Mon, Feb 16, 2015 11:29 pm
Subject: Re: Going Forward

“. . I found myself wishing I could join in the “conversation” to add a lot of pertinent information to his answers that would give him a better grasp of the big picture.”
Indeed Gary, the public conversation has been democratized and the old legacy media sources have been watching their privileged status get eroded by more dynamic and responsive voices who aren’t restricted by the social feudalism of  the New York Big Media dinosaurs or their equally slow cousins in the Hollywood Media Sycophant Industrial Complex.
BTW Mr. Cumberbatch is currently my favorite actor and I make it a point to see whatever picture he’s in.

From: Gary Smolker <>
To: Eric and Lou
Cc: Jorge and Jason
Sent: Monday, February 16, 2015 10:36 PM
Subject: Going Forward

Eric and Lou,

It is 10:25 p.m.

I just got home from a program moderated by Cara Buckley consisting of a conversation with Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley followed by a Q and A.
Based on what I observed, I agree with both of you regarding your estimation of my potential as a reporter, an interviewer, a moderator, a speaker and a writer — compared to Cara Buckley who is a culture reporter for the New York Times and the new Carpetbaggger, covering the campaigns, events and general hoopla that make up Hollywood’s film award season.
By the way:
  1. Benedict Cumberbatch is an absolutely brilliant and articulate person.
  2. From my perspective and for my benefit, the program/conversation was well worth attending.
Tomorrow I will be having brunch with my brilliant articulate friend Jorge Uribe.
I wish Cumberbatch would/could join us.
Jorge, Cumberbatch, and I could have a wonderful conversation.
Cumberbatch is brilliant.
Brilliant though his answers were — I found myself wishing I could join in the “conversation” to add a lot of pertinent information to his answers that would give him a better grasp of the big picture.
Cumberbatch was heads and shoulders above Buckley and Knightley tonight.
By the way, Keira told us it is true that she asked her parents for an “agent” when she was three years old and got an agent when she was six years old.
Keira has a lot of the mannerisms of my daughter Judi — but Judi is more articulate, more graceful, more charming, more poised and more energetic.
The sky is the limit.
Best regards,
Copyright © 2015 by Gary S. Smolker

About Gary S. Smolker

PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: No enterprise can exist for itself alone. Every successful enterprise ministers to some great need, it performs some great service, not for itself, but for others. Otherwise, it ceases to be profitable and ceases to exist. Imagination, open mindedness and flexibility are the most important factors in unlocking potential. Those who embrace innovation, improvisation, continuous learning, time management, are action oriented, high energy, passionate, creative, purposeful and intense individuals are best equipped to succeed. We all have ideas and the ability to make progress by sharing information and our ideas and also by changing our ideas when appropriate. We should always be on the lookout for teaching and mentoring moments. We hold time like water in our hands; however tightly we clench our fingers, it drips away. But, if it falls on a seed, a seed may grow to become something that will have a positive social impact. PERSONAL INTERESTS: I have a passion to learn, to innovate, to lead, to mentor and to teach. I seek to write things worth reading and want to do things worth writing about. I enjoy (a) driving a fast car, (b) having intense conversations (c) teaching/mentoring, (d) reading and (e) being involved in productive activity. PERSONAL: I believe in cultivating and backing passionate people, innovation, and old fashioned good ideas. I love making human connections and spreading good ideas. I am strongly motivated to achieve in situations in which independence of thought and action are called for. PERSONAL GOALS: I want to live life vibrantly, to be as sharp as a tack until my last breath and to change the world by being me. My personal goal is to be fully engaged in life, to lead by example, to set high standards and to continue to amass firsthand experience and knowledge in all that interests me. PERSONALITY: I love fun and mischief. I relish absurdity. I have an irreverent, facetious and satiric disposition. I dread boredom. I have spent a lifetime reading. I have no bias against people who have lived successful and/or complicated lives. I write to release tension, to get things off my chest. SOCIAL MEDIA: I post articles on the "Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange" blog at, and "Dude's Guide to Women's Shoes" at I also post images and comments on Instagram @garyspassion. CONTACT INFORMATION: Gary Smolker, Smolker Law Firm, 16055 Ventura Blvd., Ste 525, Encino, California, 91436-2609, USA. Phone 1-818-788-7290, e-mail

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