Last year, between the two of us, we watched an average of 317 movies.
This year our goal is to top that by watching at least one a day.
And as an extra special torture, we've decided to write about all of them.

21 March 2008

The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters, dir. Seth Gordon (2007)

NIKKI says:
I was not expecting competitive Donkey Kong to be so thrilling. Actually, I kinda was because I've read so many good things about this film. It lives up to those expectations for reasons that have very little to actually do with computer games.

The crux of the story is Steve Wiebe's beating of Bill Mitchell's world record Donkey Kong score. Wiebe beats Mitchell on a machine in his basement, but Mitchell won't take defeat. So Wiebe is investigated, doubted, spurned by the gaming community for apparently working conspiratorially with gaming's greatest enemy, the Missile Command record holder (whose record is not officially recognised), Mr. Awesome.

Wiebe must prove himself by playing live on a specific Donkey Kong machine. Is he as good as his home score suggests? And what's on the tape Bill Mitchell has had secretly stashed away? Why all of a sudden won't Bill Mitchell, the greatest advocate of live gaming, play live against Wiebe?

Oh my God, the tension! It's amazing how gripped you get. And not even about whether or not Steve wins or Bill wins, but just how these characters will react to each other and the mounting suspense and pressure that comes from finding the real Donkey Kong champion.

I adored this film. It was funny, sad, tragic, and exhilarating. And it really made me miss the little arcade we used to have in town, with the Space Invaders and the pinball machines. It's an optometrist office now.


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