Since its January premier at the Slamdance Film Festival, the documentary The King Of Kong and its inside look at competitive video gaming and one man’s quest to break the world’s record for classic Donkey Kong arcade game has been generating positive reviews as it continued across the spring festival circuit in advance of its August 17 limimted theatrical release. (My own review can be found here.)
One person who understandably isn’t thrilled with the documentary is Billy Mitchell.
Mitchell is one of the subjects of the film, the 20-year record holder of the Donkey Kong high score who stands in the way of nice guy underdog Steve Wiebe’s quest for the crown. The film does not paint a very flattering portrait of both him and record keeping organization Twin Galaxies, many of whose higher ups are friends of Mitchell’s.
Now, after four months of silence, Mitchell has decided to speak out and MTV News was the venue. You can read the interview here.
To be sure, complete impartiality is nigh impossible for any documentary to achieve. Just the process of editing a film to a watchable length necessitates the loss of nuance that may impact how an audience perceives certain subjects and situations. It is with that grain of salt that all documentaries must be watched.
And while Mitchell states that he has actually never seen the film, he still hints in the article at possible legal action- “I’m unhappy that so many good people were portrayed in such a negative light and it will be interesting what large law firm may step forward and offer to assist us in our quest for the truth.”
As the summer heads towards the documentary’s August release, it should be interesting to see how this plays out…