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DVD Reviews:  Searching for Bobby Fischer

The Final Say!

Feature Score:
DVD Extras Score

Reviewed by Peter Parmec
Review Date: 10 July 2003
Distributed by:
Paramount Pictures
Running Time: 105 Minutes

Beginning with a montage of documentary footage of American chess champion Bobby Fischer we are left with no illusions of the importance this ancient past time will have on the characters of Paramountís Innocent Moves.

Joshua Waitzkin is a child prodigy in the Ďartí of chess, and it is his journey in discovering his own abilities while maintaining his relationship with his father Fred which is central to the themes of this feature.  Fred employs a former chess master Bruce Pandolfini to mentor his son in the classic moves of chess, with Local Park chess hustler Vinnie showing impressionable Josh some streetwise moves.  It is with the help of both teachers that Josh hopes to succeed to national chess champion against another chess prodigy Jonathon.

DVD visual transfer is in widescreen with a somewhat grainy appearance and some artefacts.  It does not impact this sort of movie and gives it a somewhat naturally earthy feel.  Audio is in Dolby Digital 5.1 format and surprisingly the full surround was used effectively listen to the rainstorm at the beginning as an example.  Little scope to shake the room in this character driven film but you bought that subwoofer for another kind of movie.

Extras were not apparent on this review disc and the menu was not animated.  Nothing to write here.   

The movie leaves a feel good emotion and is based on a true story.   The Bobby Fischer analogy appears throughout and lends some pathos to the life metaphor that is chess.  A pleasing film with a very strong cast including Joe Mantegna and Joan Allen as the parents, Ben Kingsley and Laurance Fishburne as the mentors, and a cameo by William H Macy popping up as a jealous parent.

Searching for Bobby Fischer Features

  • None


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