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Press Start 2 Continue (2011)

Video  -  Comedy  -  11 March 2011 (USA)
7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 64 users  
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In this sequel to the acclaimed videogame comedy PRESS START, the evil sorcerer Count Vile has returned from Hades for a new bid at global domination. With original champions Zack and Sam ... See full summary »

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Title: Press Start 2 Continue (Video 2011)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Joshua Stafford ...
Al Morrison ...
Peter A. Davis ...
Jenny Nelson ...
Princess Xanna
Jennifer Zahn ...
Sam
J.W. Morrissette ...
David Humphrey ...
Vlad (voice)
Dominique Worsley ...
Spanish Ninja
Arin Hanson ...
Mug-Wug (voice)
Jane F. Cox ...
Andy Dallas ...
Shopkeeper
Eric W. Sizemore ...
Game Genie
Marty Scanlon ...
Scarthcaroth
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Noah Antwiler ...
P.O.L.I.G.A.M.O.N. (voice)
...
V-Corp Announcer (voice)
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Storyline

In this sequel to the acclaimed videogame comedy PRESS START, the evil sorcerer Count Vile has returned from Hades for a new bid at global domination. With original champions Zack and Sam already in his clutches, it's up to their estranged, ultraviolent comrade Lin-Ku and the bubbly, positive-thinking Princess Xanna to save them - and the world - from disaster. Written by Anonymous

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Press Start 4 in Japan

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Comedy

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11 March 2011 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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References Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) See more »

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User Reviews

 
More Than Another Homage
26 March 2011 | by (St. Louis, MO) – See all my reviews

When we watch a homage, we tend to build the entirety of our expectations around a viewer's familiarity of the subject matter. That said, a 9 out of 10 is perhaps a bit generous on my part, because such films tend to restrict themselves to a very specific audience. However, as my summary denotes, Ed Glaser and his team have brought something unique to the table, creating a plot which I can only describe as the equivalent of Super Robot Wars if it were to draw inspiration from video game culture instead of Japanese mecha. Press Start 2 Continue is a crossover that has become so complicated with the mixing of details from various sources that the end result feels fresh, kind of like hitting the jackpot with the right mixture of sodas at your neighborhood Quick Trip.

I must also admit that I am a huge fan of Ed Glaser's work and have followed the progress of Dark Maze Studios since the first season of Press Start Adventures (though the series did not carry "adventures" in its title at the time) which predated the original film. So feel free to remove a star if you feel this interferes with a fair review. However, considering this is an independent film built on a threadbare budget with numerous expectations, both good and bad, already in place even before the title appears on the screen... well, let's just say the team behind Press Start 2 Continue has earned their praise.

First and foremost, this is a sequel. Sequels are normally created to cash in on the original concept. However Press Start 2 Continue (Press Start 4 in Japan, or so I am told) is superior to the original in every way. This includes the writing, camera shots, editing, effects, and the acting - especially the acting. But most importantly, there is something different about the story being told that grants it a uniqueness among its ilk...

Press Start 2 Continue pays homage to the stories, both fictional and real, found within the video game industry and its products. Not only that, but just as several Anime OVAs from the 1980s were incomplete when viewed by themselves, Press Start 2 Continue requires a familiarity with the plot of the series at large to fully understand what is going on - or at least a viewing of the second and third seasons of the Press Start Adventures web series, which covers the events between the original film and its sequel. This is not a severe flaw as some of the vital details are brought to light early in the show but this is the reason I felt this movie did not make for a perfect score as it limits the ability of the film to make itself accessible for newcomers to the series. On the other hand, it allows the show to construct a more complex and entertaining tale and reveals just how far the series has evolved with its creativity and cast.

You see, the first movie was fairly straightforward with its role as a homage and thus the plot threads became utterly predictable. However, the script was written so as to discretely laugh along with us as Count Vile was continuously warned by his underling Johnson of the obvious encroaching outcome. Yet Press Start 2 Continue combines numerous elements and ideas in such a way that it isn't really predictable at all. It even manages to creatively generate a side-plot (read: side- quest) that keeps two of the main characters who are held hostage for the majority of the film in the spotlight. By the time the credits roll, you feel like you've watched an original idea for the first time in a long while.

Peter A. Davis again graces us with his masterfully-performed Count Vile and newcomer Jenny Nelson is an exceptional Princess Xanna. Dominique Worsley, Andy Dallas, and Eric W. Sizemore all had very brief roles but come across as genuine characters. David Humphrey and Arin Hanson provide their excellent voice acting talents to round things out nicely for the non-human characters.

Joshua Stafford's acting has improved dramatically since the first film, and while he does not receive as much screen time, his interactions are largely done with CGI characters - which means he was talking to walls, tables, and thin air while shooting the film. This is not easy and is especially important since actors generally build off of visual and auditory cues from one-another to produce more genuine behavioral responses. Thus his performance deserves much applause.

Al Morrison's performance as Linku was great in the first movie and he has obviously gained much from the experience. Linku is a character that requires a unique performance because his his face mask leaves only his eyes to provide any facial visual hints as to his current emotional state. He also uses a lot of body language and gestures to convey his expressions more accurately, a skill no doubt lifted straight from the Ask a Ninja series. One need look no further than viewing the first and second episodes of Ask a Ninja to understand just how vital body language is to performing while in a costume that restricts facial expressions.

While Press Start 2 Continue does sell itself on its status as a homage film, it deviates from the predictable nature of its forebear and provides something original to its audience. I would highly recommend it to anyone even vaguely familiar with the video game industry and its stereotypes though its accessibility to individuals outside this circle, and to those who have not seen any of the series' previous outings, will have some trouble picking things up. Overall, I want to congratulate the team at Dark Maze Studios for providing their fans with a feature presentation that was well worth the wait!


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