What movie was that...?

08 January 2010

The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters

directed by Seth Gordon

Don’t let the holiday disappointment Four Christmases deter you from seeing Seth Gordon’s doc masterpiece The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters. Gordon is competent behind the camera, and his subjects in this film are a testament to real life being far more entertaining (and bizarre) than fiction. The doc focuses on a Donkey Kong high score that stood for 25 years, until a self taught video game wizard attempts to break it, sparking a series of events that rival the most epic of tales. Steve Wiebe (it’s pronounced “Weebee,” chumps!) is the Rocky Balboa of the retro gaming world, a nice guy who never got a fair shake, a guy whose documented pummeling of the previous high score (held by Billy Mitchell) comes under scrutiny. Wiebe is left with no choice but to go take on the Apollo Creed of Donkey Kong, gaming samurai (self described) Billy Mitchell, heavy weight contender and owner of said high score since the early 80s, on his own turf, in a live, head to head Kong-off! Everything about this doc is top notch, from the soundtrack to the editing, from the story to the ridiculously entertaining cast of characters. The King of Kong will have you pinned to you seat and loving every minute of it.
Favorite Scene: The utter pain on Brian Kuh’s face as he explains just how difficult it is to obtain the elusive “Kill Screen” in Donkey Kong as the sounds of Steve Wiebe dominating the Fun Spot Kong machine play over his stammering, aching voice. You can’t write material this beautiful.

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