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Times of India
Srinivasa Ramanujan had the extraordinary ability to conjure up very complex and groundbreaking mathematical concepts seemingly out of thin air. And all of that, despite not having any formal training in the subject. He hailed from a humble background, and was nurtured and mentored to greatness by another brilliant mathematician, G H Hardy. This is Ramanujan's story.
The biggest challenge Matthew Brown could have faced when making this film might have been making math look interesting enough on screen to keep viewers hooked. But he manages to do so, thanks to Patel's fairly straightforward portrayal of the brilliant Ramanujan. That, and the stately Jeremy Irons, who gives Hardy oodles of wit and panache. In fact, more than just a staid version one man's life, The Man Who Knew Infinity is also about the meeting of two minds - Hardy and Ramanujan.
Ramanujan's Madras phase is portrayed somewhat briskly, with the rest of the film dealing with his life in England. Ramanujan's wife (Bhise) is shown to be devoted and caring. The person is a counterfoil to his world of numbers and theoretical mathematics. In order to make his passion accessible to her, he compares math to art. But bigger things are in store for him. After landing a job as an accountant, Ramanujan's boss convinces him to think beyond the shores of India. So when he takes a shot in the dark by sending Hardy a thick notebook filled with his work, the latter is impressed enough to get him on a ship and over to Trinity College. While hugely impressed by his genius, Hardy insists that Ramanujan supply proofs for his work. A deconstruction of his findings, as to Hardy's mind, groundbreaking theoretical mathematics isn't just pulled out from a hat. After all, Hardy wonders, where on earth do those formulas come from?
The period detailing - be it a rustic locale or sophisticated surroundings - is quite superb. Brown also tries to give the story an emotional touch, to good effect. And in fact, it is this which makes this film both enjoyable and gripping.
The film is based on 1991 book of the same name by Robert Kanigel.
Distinguished mathematicians Manjul Bhargava and Ken Ono are associate producers of the film.
R Madhavan was considered to play the lead role but the makers eventually decided that they wanted an international actor.
Novelist David Leavitt wrote a semi-fictional version of this story in his novel, "The Indian Clerk."
The film The Man Who Knew Infinity, directed by Matthew Brown, revolves around the life of ace mathematician, Srinivasan Ramanujan. Dev Patel plays the titular role as the self-taught man who lived in abject poverty in Madras and went on to be one of the greatest mathematical minds of the last century . It was Hardy, played by Jeremy Irons, who recognised the young man's promise and arranged for him to travel to Cambridge. The movie also features Devika Bhise, Stephen Fry, Arundhati Nag and Toby Jones. The actors, especially Devika and Dev, had to put in a lot of research into understanding their characters. From understanding the psyche of 20th century Tamil Brahmin man to fathoming his pain as he battled prejudice, the film tackles these issues sensitively. Besides the powerful bond between its leading men, the film also takes us through Ramanujan's relationship with his wife Janaki, played authentically by Devika, who was a pillar of strength for him all along.
The life story of Ramanujam....other than the math and the passion for it, there is hardly any "excitement" to bring it as a movie. Better positioned as a documentary. Dev has done very well and so have all the other actors. I''m still wondering if the brahmins of those days wore lunghi''s ??? While in later times all youngsters in college hostels have adapted to this garment, I think it is a wrong potrayal of Ramanujam...though it really does not matter. I get a feeling that the movie has been hastily put together wthout going into depth on Ramanujam''s life to bring out any "senti" or "exciting" parts.
This is biopic of India Mathematician Ramanujan. This is well made/directed film on the great mathematician. This film shows that any talent in India is not recognized until it is recognized abroad. Once started seeing no body can leave the film. It is beautiful film not forgettable. The maker of the film deserves all kudos. No body can escape being emotional seeing this film. .