December 28, 2013

Computer Chess (2013)

Computer Chess (2013) - Movie Review
Directed by: Andrew Bujalski
Country: USA

Movie Review: “Computer Chess” is definitely one of the weirdest films of the year. An offbeat indie comedy that takes us to a hotel in the early 80’s, time amazingly recreated and painted in an old-fashioned yet appealing black-and-white, where we can follow a group of obsessive computer nerds gathering for a weekend chess tournament intended to software programmers. You won’t learn how to play chess here, and is not required that you know something about it; despite of the several mentions to the strategy board game, the film simply focuses on weird people whose strange behaviors and difficult human relations project us to a completely different dimension. The characters were definitely smartly built, but for me the film only had positive outcomes now and then, never constructing a sufficiently solid narrative sequence to get me totally involved. The inclusion of a therapy group that was having their private sessions in the hotel and their posterior contact with the nerds, was determinant to create some more disarray in the plot, getting away from complex technological considerations about hardware and software (was this really possible?). “Computer Chess” is sometimes intriguing and challenging, but other times can be also dense and pointless. By presenting an irreverent posture within an original context, the film becomes peculiarly watchable, but I never found true valuable aspects that make me want to watch it a second time.

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