‘Game’ off

The greatest thing about fake documentaries, such as “This is Spinal Tap” or pretty much anything else director Christopher Guest has done, is they never come across as being fake. Sure, the people in them generally come across as too stupid to exist, but because of the elements Guest uses it never jumps out that what is being displayed is pure fiction.

“Gamers” is the perfect example of what a poorly made Christopher Guest movie would be like if he ever could find it in himself to make one. Immediately the film starts off looking fake as the characters on screen are visibly trying to act certain ways instead of letting things flow.

The film surrounds the lives of four slacker friends obsessed with a role playing game called Demons, Nymphs and Dragons. These gamers are shown attempting to make it through their horrendous lives while attempting to break the world record for role playing for over 74,558 hours.

As previously stated, the film and events just never naturally flow. With other fake documentaries, the dialogue and reactions seem to always come across as spontaneous. At numerous points “Gamers” comes across as being scripted. The four actors, including John Heard, Beverly D’Angelo, Kelly LeBrock and William Katt, deliver their dialogue as if it had been rehearsed several times before, and their allegedly improvised reactions look as though they had been practiced countless times while standing in front of a mirror.

The humor of the film is equally just as bad. If you are into any of the following you may enjoy the film: children getting hit with dodgeballs in the gut, spontaneous shots of men in jock straps and songs whose lyrics are about a man named Dick and how much everyone loves him. When the film does experience a unique breakthrough with a joke, it eventually takes it too far and gets the viewer to beg for the next pointless scene to come so the present one will just end.

The film has several sub-plots and none of them are ever given the slightest bit of credit for being worthy of our attention. Just as quickly as they are introduced they are resolved, which makes it hard to take anything seriously towards the end of the film’s hour and a half running time.

“Gamers” is not in the least bit enjoyable and for the most part excruciatingly painful to watch. It is unoriginal, using sight gags that have appeared in countless movies made before it, only they did it with twice the style and quality.

Had more been done by those involved with the film to actually make it look and feel like a real-life situation, then perhaps it wouldn’t have ended up as bad as it does. But the film just loses its way from the get go, taking the viewer on a journey that some may find hilarious, but most will shake their head in dismay of how anything like this could ever be considered worthy of producing.

– Scott Hansen