Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Fistful Of Quarters

Today a documentary I’ve been waiting months to see finally came out on DVD. The documentary in question is The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters and from all of the reviews I’ve read it is going to be really, really good. The movie follows “a science teacher and a hot sauce mogul [as they] vie for the Guinness World Record on the arcade classic, Donkey Kong.” (link) There’s a certain nostalgia playing those old video arcade games like Ms. Pac-Man and Centipede that just can’t be replicated by the Wiis and PS3s of today.

The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters
I had been planning on seeing The King of Kong while it was still out in the movie theaters, but of course it was just my luck that the day before I was planning to go see it, it left the theaters. I was pretty annoyed at the time, so of course as soon as I could I ran to my local Blockbuster and rented the DVD. I should be watching it by the time you read this, and if I have some more time tonight I’ll give you guys a report. In the mean time here’s the official trailer for The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters:

If you can’t access YouTube or you just want additional info on the movie read on. According to www.billyvssteve.com:

In 1982, LIFE Magazine assembled the world’s greatest gamers for a photo shoot that would become the center spread of their 1982 Year-In-Photos edition. Billy Mitchell, who would later be named the “Gamer of the Century,” was one of the invitees.

Mitchell, the World Record holder on Centipede, had been tracking the score on Donkey Kong, and knew he would take that title as well. In front of the 20 best gamers in the world, Billy scored 874,300 points, a record many thought would never be broken.

In 2003, 35 year old family man Steve Wiebe, after losing his job at Boeing, found solace in Donkey Kong. Steve stumbled upon Billy Mitchell’s record online, and set out to break it. He began perfecting his game every night after his wife and kids went to bed, and not only surpassed Billy’s record, but ended up with a thought-to-be-impossible 1,000,000 points.

In the months that followed, Steve and Billy engaged in a cross-country duel to see who could set the high score that would be included in the 2007 Guinness World Records’ book and become The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters.

According to Wikipedia (we all know how reliable that is, so take this with a grain of salt), “a scripted movie adaptation is already in the works. Director Seth Gordon has said that the movie might be a sequel instead of a remake, telling the story of how the documentary changed both men's lives, as well as their continuing rivalry.” (link)

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