The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters


kingofkongIt is undeniably fascinating to take this look into a universe you know nothing about, populated by people who live in a bubble. It’s the story of two guys who have battled for the championship of Donkey Kong for several years now. The filmmakers clearly take sides; Billy Mitchell is portrayed as an unlikable bragger who rarely faces his opponents in real life, while Steve Wiebe is a suburban dad who has one shot at succeeding at something in life. Guess how the movie ends? Not entirely truthful, this is nevertheless a very engaging documentary about the originals at and the passions we are prepared to sacrifice for. The scene where Wiebe’s daughter asks him why Guinness World Records matters is a rare reminder of the world outside the bubble.

2007-U.S. 82 min. Color. Produced by Ed Cunningham. Written and directed by Seth Gordon.

Quote: “No matter what I say, it draws controversy. It’s sort of like the abortion issue.” (Mitchell)

Last word: “It’s just amazing the impact that movie had, given how we made it, you know? It was just me and a friend travelling round the country with a camera and a mic and a light. That’s how we did almost all that movie. That it’s had any kind of lasting impact, cultural or otherwise, is just amazing. […] Vince Vaughn saw ‘King Of Kong’ and he opened the door for me to Hollywood, really.” (Gordon, Den of Geek)

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