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Perspective: Video Games: The Movie

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vgtm_box I went into this film intending on writing a review, however after seeing what it has to offer I think the better article more discusses what you can expect and if, at this time, it’s worth the higher prices asked of a direct-to-digital (DTD) release.

I didn’t know about this movie until the day before it was released thanks to an interview between Giant Bomb’s Patrick Klepek and director Jeremy Snead.  In their brief conversation, it becomes clear that Snead has chosen to tackle this documentary as a pop culture phenomenon and dissects it for the public.  Knowing that I went into VGtM expecting it to be adjusted for a general audience and quite possibly learning nothing new that anyone who’s studied video game history didn’t already know (or could learn on this and other sites).  That’s okay, as a retro gaming blogger and podcaster I know I’m working with a minority group (retro gamers) within a minority group (“core” gamers, for lack of a better term).  To put it bluntly: if he made a movie specifically for us or people like us it would be a commercial failure.  Not only that, but I got the feeling from some of Klepek’s line of questioning that Snead may not be quite up to snuff on his deep historical facts on gaming’s past.  I’ll give him this though, his favorite video game of all time is Ikari Warriors on the NES, and that has to count for something.  For appropriateness I invited over a couple of friends who are familiar with gaming but most likely knew little about the subject and also piggy-backed my wife into the audience, which is somewhat unfair because she has to listen to my historical gaming diatribes on a regular basis, and we watched this mainstream-safe documentary on more than four decades of my favorite hobby.

It wasn’t more than 10 minutes in (the film runs just around 90 mins) that I was already annoying people as I questioned, nitpicked, and vocalized by general dissatisfaction with the way Snead’s film tackled history itself.  After a justified attack on my disposition, I shut the hell up and just watched the film for face value.  To my surprise, I was entertained.

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Written by Fred Rojas

August 5, 2014 at 12:47 pm

Posted in Blog

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