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- Deleted scenes
- Interview gallery
- "The 5 Unforgettable Puzzles Ever" Featurette
- Wordplay goes to Sundance
- Gary Louris music video: "Every Word"
- Waiting for the New York Times: A short film by Patricia Erens
- Photo gallery
Top Customer Reviews
Those who appear in this movie find crossword puzzles to be anything but casual. And this is not about just any crossword puzzle. This is the "gold standard." The NYT crossword puzzle. You may genuflect if you wish.
As the movie unfolds we hear how the NYT graduates the difficulty of its puzzles from Monday to Sunday. We learn how they are constructed, how they are made more difficult, what the rules of puzzle building are and how crossword puzzles infect and afflict those who are addicted to them. Celebrities from Ken Burns to Jon Stweart are utilized in cameo pieces, some of which are very entertaining.
This all culminates in the Marriott Hotel in Stamford, CT where the World Crossword Puzzle Championship takes place every year in March. We meet some of the contestants, we are shown how the tournament is organized and the friendships it has engendered during the years it has been held and as the days pass we get to the "A" finals where three finalists try to solve a puzzle against time on large easels set up at the front of the room which will really draws you in to the genre.
Whether crossword puzzles are your thing or not, this is an entertaining and interesting movie to see. It did not encourage me to increase my crossword puzzle activity, but it sure gave me a deeper appreciation of what those who are hooked on it go through. There is something in this movie for everyone.
It is not a giant movie... it is a small documentary about one interesting subculture. While there are plenty
of famous people in the movie and that makes it more entertaining, the real heroes are ordinary people,
and the movie makes them all lovable when it could just as easily have mocked them. I am not
the least bit interested in doing crossword puzzles, but this movie is about a community,
both virtual and real, from all walks of life, that loves to do puzzles, and the movie made
me like *them*.
The movie uses brilliant visualizations to show puzzles being constructed and solved. Several
reviews in newspapers have mentioned the wonderful cover of a Talking Heads tune by Shawn
Colvin at a key point in the movie... I echo that. You will not be able to get it out of your head
after you see the movie.
I would not expect a documentary about crossword puzzles to make me laugh out loud and
cry in a theatre, but in fact it did both.
What a great documentary, and how fun to watch. In an age of vulgar and ridiculous entertainment, there is a shining example of entertainment revolving around a group of inteligensia. Bravo, and two enthusiastic thumbs up!
Directed with a sense of fun by Patrick Creadon, and featuring a lively musical soundtrack, "Wordplay" has an eclectic cast, including former President Bill Clinton, who uses a blue felt tip pen to fill in his puzzle, as well as comedian Jon Stewart and Yankee pitcher Mike Mussina. Stewart and Mussina approach their puzzles differently. Stewart yells maniacally as he dares Shortz to defeat him. Jon dryly admits, "I am a Times puzzle fan. I will solve the USA Today [puzzle], but I don't feel good about myself." Mike Mussina, who is shown in his Yankee uniform working on his puzzle in the dugout, admits that he finds solving the Times crossword very relaxing. The famous documentary filmmaker, Ken Burns, is another junkie who eagerly looks forward to his fix. He asserts that the New York Times Crossword is a celebration of language, which is the common denominator that unites us all.
However, it is not the well-known faces who make this film sing, but the ordinary Janes and Joes. There is an entertaining segment with Merl Reagle, a Crossword Constructor, who allows the viewer to look over his shoulder while he creates a new puzzle.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've worked my share of crossword puzzles, but until I saw this film I was unaware that there were organized crossword competitions featuring participants whose skills are as... Read morePublished 24 days ago by David D.
Probably the best edited doc or the last ten years. A must see for all closet nerds and anyone who is a little OCD.Published 29 days ago by William C. Spater
I love this. So you're thinking, "a documentary about crossword puzzles?" Yeah, that's right! Give it a try, it's awesome.Published 3 months ago by Marcos Pablo
An engaging documentary about he works of serious cross word puzzling and the people who make them, so them. And solve them competitively. Very enjoyablePublished 3 months ago by EC10023