New in cinemas – 22nd November 2013
Have you ever wandered round a hotel at night on pills and been disturbed by how many cats you encounter? No, neither has anyone else except Papageorge, one of the many strange characters in Andrew Bujalski’s newest film. Full of quiet humour and surreal incidents, Computer Chess is about exactly that – a computer chess competition set in the early-80s. Seeing as Bujalski has never seen a budget in his life, he used an old tube camera to make this an effective period piece, and the results are extraordinarily convincing. What sounds like it should be boring and incredibly pretentious turns out to be strangely entertaining, a film which sees the funny side of nerds being nerds and computer programming being an incongruously weird experience. Essays could (and probably will) be written about the dense and elliptical Computer Chess which usurps my previous choice of Upstream Color as the most unique film of the year.