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In the early 1980s, legendary Billy Mitchell set a Donkey Kong record that stood for almost 25 years. This documentary follows the assault on the record by Steve Wiebe, an earnest teacher from Washington who took up the game while unemployed. The top scores are monitored by a cadre of players and fans associated with Walter Day, an Iowan who runs Funspot, an annual tournament. Wiebe breaks Mitchell's record in public at Funspot, and Mitchell promptly mails a controversial video tape of himself setting a new record. So Wiebe travels to Florida hoping Mitchell will face him for the 2007 Guinness World Records. Will the mind-game-playing Mitchell engage; who will end up holding the record? Written by
KING OF KONG is one of the greatest movies I've seen in a while - not documentaries, movies. The film-making here is nothing short of extraordinary - building suspense, creating anticipation, and playing with the archetypes like the best Hollywood movies.
If you have ever played the original Donkey Kong arcade game, or on the original Nintendo, you have to see this movie. I have never beaten Level 3 on the third cycle - the spring on the elevator stage, if you know what I'm talking about, is going extremely fast. These guys get beyond 20 cycles.
I don't want to give anything away...I heard they are going to make this a feature movie with actors, but I think that eliminates the main draw of this concept - these guys are in their forties, in some freak cases have wives and children, and they play Donkey Kong with as much heart as Lance Armstrong rode bikes. They are some of the strongest characters I've seen in a movie since STAR WARS. To best summarize how enjoyable this movie is, after watching the DVD for the first time, I immediately restarted it from the beginning, and watched it again.
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