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The King of Kong

If you’re heading out to the movies this weekend, allow me to humbly suggest one to put on your consideration list: The King of Kong. It is, perhaps, the funniest movie I have seen in five or six years.

I should back up and explain how I heard about this movie. A friend of mine, Joe Manganiello, and I have an not-unusual habit whenever we’re in a play together: backstage, we’re constantly trading movie quotables back and forth. We treat them like an 18th-Century French-Canadian furrier treats beaver pelts…as things of immense value, to be cherished and admired.

Well, last week, as we were wrapping up the run of a breast-cancer benefit play in Hollywood (which I completely forgot to blog about….hey-o, Mr. Forgetful!), Joe started throwing out lines from “King of Kong”. And these quotes were hilarious — BRILLIANTLY hilarious. They were…they were like rare diamonds from the De Beers family vault that no one’s seen in 85 years. That good. And the quotes alone sold it: I wanted to see this movie like few in recent memory.

And, having just come from the film, I can tell you that it does not disappoint. It is, in almost every sense, a perfectly crafted humor documentary. But it’s not just straight humor: it has heart and soul and story and character arcs that read like a Christopher Guest/Ken Burns joint project.

The first 15 minutes are worth the price of admission alone. I laughed out loud at almost every line.

So do yourself a favor: treat yourself to a little King of Kong, which is playing in most independent and arthouse theaters around the country. And take friends that like to laugh — it’ll be infinitely more fun.