Movies for Gamers #1: Dorkness Rising

This is part of a series of reviews of movies particularly interesting or inspiring for role playing. Because of their setting, style, characters, editing or story. Read the introduction here or here if you are new to this series.

In case you haven't seen The Gamers: Dorkness Rising yet, you've missed out on something. The movie was made by gamers, for gamers, with all the nerdiness of the hobby. And it's huge fun. Even if you haven't ever played in a role playing game, you may roll over the floor laughing while watching. It's extremely recognizeable.

Okay, that's for the superlatives. Now what is this 104 minute movie about? About life, love, friendship and the things that matter obviously. Lodge, a game master, wants to publish his first module and is desperately stuck. Writer's block. And instead of allowing his players and himself to be spontaneous, he tries to railroad them into playing the same adventure again and again. The players in their turn are as obnoxious as they can be, more interested in blowing up innocent peasants to collect experience points. Or more interested in seducing each others characters, than in saving the world. To complicate matters, an ex girlfriend of one of the players joins the group and a relationship seems to develop with Lodge. So here comes the jealousy. Remember that from your gaming group? I do.

The movie switches between the players and the characters all the time, explaining how the game works along the way. So don't be afraid to finally invite that cute girl (or guy) who doesn't play – but whom you have been admiring for long – to watch the film with you. You can never be as nerdy as the players in this movie. So you'll be fine.

The makers, who are professional amateur film makers – yes, that's possible – seem to have financed their film with the help of many hobby stores and game producers. And they put in a lot of unpaid effort themselves. Writer director Matt Vancill even does a little cameo as Lodge's drunken room mate. Some of the actors are actually quite good, certainly lead Nathan Rice, who can do some martial arts and a great wookie impersonation too. The actors sure had a lot of fun filming, and it shows off.

The DVD sports quite a few extra's which are worth buying it for. So don't just go for the ripped Divx, and order it here. Motivate these guys to do it again!

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