Combustible Celluloid
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With: Billy Mitchell, Steve Wiebe, Walter Day, Todd Rogers, Steve Sanders, Doris Self
Written by: n/a
Directed by: Seth Gordon
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for a brief sexual reference
Running Time: 79
Date: 04/21/2007

The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2007)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Over a Barrel

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Billy Mitchell has held the world record on the video game "Donkey Kong" since 1982, Steve Wiebe wishes to challenge that title, and the winner will make the Guinness Book of World Records. Seth Gordon's documentary is not particularly journalistic, but rather refreshingly, and specifically, skewed. Gordon paints the champ -- with his bizarre mane of coiffed heavy-metal hair -- as arrogant and conniving, while the challenger comes across as a lovable hard-luck case; thus the film magnificently, and almost inadvertently, captures the story of the American Dream. Its 79 minutes is packed with unexpected, dramatic ups and downs, as well as information about the history, rules and behavior of the video game world. It could have been more thorough, but hardly less entertaining.

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