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MOVIE REVIEW: FTN reviews Nintendo Quest

October 22nd, 2015 by Marc Comments


Nintendo Quest
Directed by: Rob McCallum
Starring: Jay Bartlett
Watch it here

One man. 30 days, 678 games. No online purchases. It’s the premise that launched a film over 10,000 miles in the making and showcases the adventure of video game rock star, Jay Bartlett, a fanatic collector in pursuit of his dream to own a complete official North American NES library. Along the way, filmmaker Rob McCallum examines the enduring legacy of the NES and Nintendo while talking to the enthusiastic community of retro gamers and game collectors.

Jay Bartlett is a man who loves few things; top of these things is Star Wars, Rock N’ Roll and video games. And he has set himself an almost impossible task… to acquire all of Nintendo’s 678 games in 30 days. Yes, really.

Now, he has a number of the games already… but he has to start from zero. And he can’t use ebay or any online sources; this is a back to basics, old skool, feet on the ground task. Find shops and collectors, track down the games and do the impossible. It touchs upon the plight of the collector, walking from shop to shop, in search of that one hard to find item and the joy of acquiring it at last. With me it was action figures, but I recognise the fire in the heart.

And it’s quite a watch.

As the task starts, things are very promising as Jay finds the first few stores have a good lot of the games, but after he acquires about half his quarry things soon become more interesting and a list of ‘hard to find’ games quickly raises its head. And that’s where things truly get interesting.

Along the way, Jay finds an arch-nemisis in a rival collector (hardly a moustache twirling villain, the guy seems pretty nice and is out to make things a little more complicated, but he’s not exactly the Joker) and pretty soon the task become more than just a challenge.

It becomes a quest.

Jay delves much deeper into his soul than was expected as the movie gets closer to the end and his final few games become the be all and end all. He finds himself opening up about his family history and why he is the person he has become; far from being about video games, it quickly becomes a journey of self-discovery and it’s riveting in places.

Now, obviously I don’t want to spoilt the outcome as Jay reaches highs and lows, successes and failures, money hungry collectors and decent folks, but it is a delight to watch. We feel Jay’s pains and celebrate his victory… we WANT this guy to succeed. But alas, we never quite feel he will.

Emotional, inspiring, touching and downright silly in places, Nintendo Quest touchs many of us in a place we rarely see explored on screen. It’s the passion of the collector… I’m sure there’s many of us on here reading this (I’m certainly one) and it’s nice to see the mirror held up because, you know what, it’s really not so bad.

Well done Jay, we salute you sir.

4 out of 5 Nerds

Nintendo Quest from Vision Films on Vimeo.

Marc is a self-confessed nerd. Ever since seeing Star Wars for the first time around 1979 he’s been an unapologetic fan of the Wars and still believes, with Clone Wars and now Underworld, we are yet to see the best Star Wars. He’s a dad of two who now doesn’t have the time (or money) to collect the amount of toys, comics, movies and books he once did, much to the relief of his long-suffering wife. In the real world he’s a graphic designer. He started Following the Nerd because he was tired of searching a million sites every day for all the best news that he loves and decided to create one place where you can go to get the whole lot. Secretly he longs to be sitting in the cockpit of his YT-1300 Corellian Transport ship with his co-pilot Chewie, roaming the universe, waiting for his next big adventure, but feels just at home watching cartoons with his kids….