Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 23 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 68 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A middle-school science teacher and a hot sauce mogul vie for the Guinness World Record on the arcade classic, Donkey Kong. (Picturehouse Entertainment)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. Reviewed by: Scott Schueller
    100
    Gordon's documentary proves better than 90 percent of the manufactured stories out this summer. One can breathe a sigh of relief that it was done right and not cobbled into another bad fictional comedy.
  2. A funny and madly arresting new documentary.
  3. 91
    This film about fierce competition among classic video-game players is a comic action epic in documentary form. It captures fear -- and heroism -- in a handful of dusty video games.
  4. One of this year's funniest movies -- and its most inspirational sports drama -- is a documentary.
  5. Reviewed by: Luke Y. Thompson
    80
    It may seem overblown when one of the gamers calls Donkey Kong a metaphor for life, but The King of Kong is just that -- a reminder of how we all have to prove ourselves to others, and the extent to which the odds are often stacked against outsiders and newcomers.
  6. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    80
    The movie’s “Rocky” formula proves irresistible anyway; unsurprisingly, New Line has commissioned Mr. Gordon to remake this story with actors.
  7. 40
    It's a depressing little kingdom, even when Gordon tries desperately to goose the drama with the requisite "Eye of the Tiger" riffs and some junior high-level palace intrigue.

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 30
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 30
  3. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. JumperM.
    Mar 10, 2008
    10
    A fine movie! Who thought documentaries could be so good? Complete with champions, villains and nerds. Very nicely done.
  2. FelixJ.
    Nov 27, 2007
    10
    That muthaf0cking Billy person is such a muthaf0cking tool. He totally sucks ass. And that guy with the glasses is his slave, his tool and his ass. What a fuck! Maruamamtmt! Expand
  3. TedS.
    Aug 28, 2007
    10
    Good vs. Evil incarnate. Live DK vs. taped DK - no comparison, baby. An excellent Doc.
  4. AlexK.
    Feb 29, 2008
    10
    Extremely compelling! Billy Mitchell is an excellent villain, a cowardly, arrogant jerk with horrible fashion sense.
  5. ChadS.
    Feb 12, 2008
    9
    Seen together as a collective, the guys from Stacy Peralta's "Dogtown and Z-Boys" and Seth Gordon's "The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters", are like the two outsider cliques in Judd Apatow's "Freaks and Geeks". Freaks win, hands down; at least their labour of love led to fame and fortune, while the geeks will just have to make do with this absolutely mesmerizing doc about being a beautiful loser(the film uses Leonard Cohen's "Everybody Knows"; the Canadian singer/songwriter wrote a novel called "Beautiful Losers"). Hot-sauce impresario Billy Mitchell(or what I like to call him, evil Kenny Loggins) is the sort of guy who relates with the evil sensei from "The Karate Kid", you know, the guy who tells his pupil to "sweep the leg", Danny's leg, Ralph Macchio's leg, at the climactic karate tournament(the movie uses the immortal "You're the Best" to spectacular effect). Why nice-guy Steve Wiebe feels the need to measure up to this megalomaniac is beyond comprehension. Even worse is Wiebe's need for validation by the corrupt people who run Twin Galaxies, a monolithic organization with a rulebook that's fluid just like the NCAA's(these jackasses stripped the University of Hawaii's men's volleyball of its title in 2002). When official Walter Day mispronounces Wie-be's name like a monosyllabic cognomen, we get the old coot's gyst; this gamer from the Northwest is a "dweeb". You really feel for Steve's wife, "the first-lady of Donkey Kong", who is the ultimate armchair quarterback's wife. If Steve ever buys a Frogger coin-op, she should file for divorce. "The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters" does for the eighties what "Dogtown and the Z-Boys" did for the seventies, the soundtrack and cultural signifiers from both films make you want to relive the decade of your childhood. "You're the best!/around!/nothing's ever gonna keep you down... Expand
  6. Nov 4, 2012
    9
    The King of Kong is an excellent documentary. It portrays an engaging story and the director should be praised for how well the audience is positioned during the movie. Many great scenes, and wholly recommended. Expand
  7. AlecE.
    Mar 14, 2008
    7
    well made documentary. you really feel yourself rooting for the under dog. shows how serious even the most absurd interests are to those unfortunately involved. Expand

See all 30 User Reviews