Home > Movies, Not-A-Reviews > REVIEW: Beyond the Game

REVIEW: Beyond the Game

Beyond the Game


Forgive me, readers, for I had content lined up yesterday and the day before from two article ideas I had two days ago that I thought would be 500 words each. An album review–previously done in the 500 word format–and a short piece on the new YMMV section on TVTropes, a measure which still feels less like a legitimate section for tropes and more like a wiki-scale timeout for the rest of us. Today, I woke up and woke up my computer as normal. Or at least, it was mostly normal, until I realized the laptop which had served me faithfully for two years now had a primary disk error. Now, here I am on the family’s backup machine, reviewing a movie that came recommended with uTorrent when I installed it on this machine, Beyond the Game.

Beyond the Game is a documentary about two competitive players–one of whom is Chinese–meeting for the grand showdown at their particular game: Warcraft. It’s a movie about competitive Warcraft, but honestly, I already watched The King of Kong, this can’t be far off. Except no one in King of Kong spoke Chinese, and I never put Windows Media Player Classic with the Combined Community Codec Pack onto this computer, which means now there are no subtitles for me to read. Despite the fact that I can see the subtitle file right there, next to the movie in the torrent folder. Is this entertaining you, yet? Because truth be told, I’m getting a little bit pissed off from having to install this much crap.

This is so amazingly infuriating on so many levels. I’m trying to watch a god damn movie here, and all I get is this crap from every single media player installed on this piece of crap machine that can’t even play smooth audio for more than two and a half seconds about how they can’t play those god damn subtitles–WELL I’LL TELL YOU WHAT, SUBTITLES ARE NECESSARY WHEN ONE OF THESE PEOPLE DOESN’T SPEAK THE KING’S ENGLISH. All this guy speaks apparently is fluent Chinese, which is really no surprise, given that he looks about as Chinese as–oh, I don’t know, THE POPULATION OF CHINA?! I know this is really unprofessional of me, but you know what’s unprofessional of you, whatever asshat made this movie?! Not hardsubbing a film you intended to be seen by international audiences when one of your documentary subjects speaks CHINESE AS HIS FIRST LANGUAGE.

How the hell am I supposed to be able to review this movie if I just have the .avi file, hm? You’re giving out your barely over an hour long feature for free on uTorrent, ever think that maybe somebody who isn’t as technically advanced as you, Mr. BigShot Independent Documentarian might have to watch your movie on something that’s older than some children they’re acquainted with? GOD, this is just so BUSHLEAGUE. You know, I’ve switched to my third media player now–third, VLC–trying to get this to play. Turns out I didn’t have VLC either! What a shock! I should be dead by now with the amount of shock I feel over the fact that nothing, absolutely nothing in this day has gone right!

I wake up, my computer’s a brick. I text my girlfriend, she’s a nervous mess. I talk to my mum, she’s been dealing with network and computer and printer troubles, ALL DAY. I turn around, there’s another problem. And you know, all day, there’s been this notion hanging around my head that maybe it’s all my fault and maybe I’m the one who broke my computer that froze at the god damn welcome screen and maybe I’m the one who tries to sabotage every good thing in Ailish’s life and maybe I’m the one bedeviling my mum’s new fax/scan/printer, but so HELP me, NOT BEING ABLE TO REVIEW THIS MOVIE IS JUST NOT MY FAULT RIGHT NOW. I don’t have anything prepared! I don’t have anything to talk about! I don’t have anything for you, but you vultures, you maniacs, you just keep demanding more from me! I’m only one man, I can’t publish a thousand words a day for every day out of the year! I’ll either go mad or get a paying job at this before I do that!

I try to listen to a nice Bartok string quartet on my girlfriend’s iPod–IT’S ON SHUFFLE. Where are the shuffle settings?! I don’t know! I’ve rebelled against owning one of these for years now, because god dammit, I’m a man of few principles, but I stick to them LONG after they’re hopelessly outdated. Thankfully, my skepticism of iPods was proven correct when I found out, on Chad’s iPod, that you can’t transfer actual songs from the device itself to your computer. How too cool for school is that. Oh, Steve Jobs is so worried about god damn piracy that he’s going to keep me from getting an album I gave my girlfriend as a gift from her iPod onto this piece of crap computer just so I can listen to something I bought in a god damn store without being dragged through it at random GOD DAMN IT. It’s absolutely useless, it’s a piece of crap device and if you can’t transfer data from it, to your computer, what use is it? What use can it possibly be? Say you lose your entire media library, but all of it’s on there–what do you do? WHAT CAN YOU DO?

It’s been a real crap day and I don’t have to come home to deal with the rest of this business. I can’t talk to any of my friends cos I haven’t installed MSN, I feel like getting a good night’s sleep and MY GOD DAMN COMPUTER’S A BRICK. I don’t know what in the god damn world made me think that watching a movie about competitive gaming that IS HALF IN GOD DAMN NOT-ENGLISH CHINESE sounded GOOD at the moment. This movie probably sucks, it’s barely over an hour long, so screw it–TWO STARS

Categories: Movies, Not-A-Reviews
  1. ████ing What?
    February 18, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    You’re a ████ing idiot. Don’t █████ because you’re a lazy █████. This is not a movie review, and yet it’ll be one of the first things you’ll find if you google “Beyond the Game Review”. Quit wasting search space ██████.

    • February 18, 2011 at 4:15 pm

      I censored your hate speech, I hope you don’t mind. Actually, I don’t care whether you mind or not, so tough.

      If you look at the categories this was posted under, you’ll see that they are (alphabetically): “Movies” and “Not-A-Reviews”. This isn’t some clever reaction to your comment, this is how it’s been categorized since the day I posted it. See, I know it’s not a review now like I knew it wasn’t a review the day I posted it. And, honestly, if you can’t glean that from the article itself, then you’re not interested in seeing the movie. Then again, you obviously did glean that from the article, saying “This is not a movie review”. … Again, I know that, you know that and anyone who reads it will know that. So I’m wondering why you commented here.

      See, you call me a lazy prick. I accept the prick part, I’m not a good man, but lazy? Well, lazy for real world tasks, yes, I’d agree. I’m not exactly up on household duties, but I do my share. What concerns me is that you call me lazy without noticing that I’ve written over a thousand words per day on average since December 23rd. I know it’s not much, writing over 60 thousand words in seven weeks, but it’s hardly an effort that could be called lazy. “Oh,” I predict you’ll say, “I meant you can’t get subtitles to work on a movie cos you’re lazy.” Well, you know, yes. Yes, I am lazy that way, if being lazy means I want to watch a movie with the least amount of set-up and muck-around as possible. So do you, don’t you? You want to sit down and watch a movie when you put a movie on, not bother about trying to find the subtitles or find a program that can read them. You just want to sit there and watch the movie. Am I wrong? Do you intentionally set the subtitles on every Blu-Ray or DVD player you own to French, the menus to German and buy TV manuals only written in the finest of Hebrew?

      Really, what perturbs me most about you, good sir, is your lack of decorum. This isn’t /v/. This isn’t your gamer forum of choice. This isn’t an anonymous, large-scale corporate site/news-aggregator. This is a personal blog. I know, I know–“but you publish reviews, how can you call it personal?” It’s all me. With the exception of one article on this site, I’ve written every word here. So when you leave a comment like this, you aren’t fighting the man. You aren’t a rebel and you aren’t a PC gamer showing how you’re so butch. You’re just a loser attacking a twenty year old Canadian shut-in. It just makes me sad to see guys like you, who think they’re always in the right and always deserve to have their way. That attitude is one of deep entitlement, and is one of the reasons that people don’t take video games as a medium seriously. Take a look around my blog–cos that’s what this is, a blog–and you can see that I wish we lived in a world where a Warcraft competition was taken as seriously as a chess tournament. I’m sure if I could’ve watched this movie, I’d be impressed by Grubby, Sky and their skills.

      These reviews aren’t fact based. They’re subject to a lot of things. Viewing conditions, who I saw the movie with, whether I saw it on a Monday morning or Friday night. Or, indeed, whether or not there are subtitles included in the movie itself when distributed in English speaking communities. I was having a bad day, it was nearing my personal midnight deadline and I had to write something. While this article certainly was intended to be a review of Beyond the Game, in the end, I just couldn’t watch it. The distributor could’ve hardsubbed the .avi file and everyone would be fine. Instead, on the very page I linked to for the movie, people are complaining that they can’t see the subtitles. It’s not just me. It’s other people like you. Gamers. People who would be excited for a movie about the top two competitive Warcraft players in the world. And they can’t see this movie either. You brought up that people searching “beyond the game review” will find my review first. I’d like to mention the search string that led to this article that stuck out the most to me: “beyond the game documentary subtitles dont show up”.

      It’s a personal blog. It’s something for me and my friends to have a laugh about an hour before midnight each day over MSN before we go to bed. So please, the next time you comment on my blog, treat it like you were talking to an actual person instead of an anonymous corporation that will probably delete your comment anyway. You have the right to free speech, and you make a valid point. My article probably shouldn’t be the first review of this movie somebody finds on Google. Tell you what–since I suspect that’s a real email address you’ve left with your comment, I’ll make you a deal. I watch this movie, dedicate a thousand words to it, and link to your article of same on this one. I’ll have a little disclaimer at the top that says “this is not actually a review of Beyond the Game, someone without a sense of humour about competitive Warcraft made me add this and explain the joke to you all, sorry you couldn’t exhibit independent thought and realize that if you were interested enough in a 61 minute movie about two dudes who fight each other with dwarves and elves on computers to google the title of the movie plus the word ‘review”, that maybe you didn’t need a review to tell you that you wanted to see it”. Whoa, never mind, that’s a run-on sentence, and we can’t have that.

      Oh hey, btw, the day your big, expensive PC gaming PC breaks down or your XBox 360 red rings, gimme a call. I want to know how all that yoga, pilates and meditation you frequently do helped you to stay perfectly calm during that trying time in your life. Be ashamed of yourself, you uncouth, ignorant and narrow-minded ass. To paraphrase Clint Eastwood, get off my blog.

  2. chris
    February 21, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    if you use vlc media player it will open any srt file that may come with whatever you download

    • February 21, 2011 at 9:32 pm

      Fun story: by the time I figured out that MPC was actually playing it with subtitles, it was too late to watch the movie. I still downloaded VLC cos it is a damn good media player.

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