Pin It
Favorite

DVD Review 

Darkon & r & & r & by MARTY DEMAREST & r & & r & & lt;span class= "dropcap " & I & lt;/span & want to climb into a suit of stainless steel armor. I want to wrap my hands around a sword and hack at someone else's head. I want to scream until my throat is hoarse, charging across a soccer field with dozens of other armor-clad, padded-sword-wielding warriors. In short, after watching Darkon I want to LARP.





LARP is an acronym for live-action role-playing -- like Dungeons & amp; Dragons but acted out in real life -- and the documentary Darkon makes LARPing look like the most fun in the world. It's not that the documentary advocates the hobby -- it's sympathetic to its subject, like all good documentaries, but keeps its distance. Rather, Darkon scrutinizes a large group of people living in the Washington, D.C., area who get together on weekends to enact battles in the imaginary realm of Darkon. These gamers speak so well for their hobby that it's hard not to feel the fun they're having.





Directors Andrew Neel and Luke Meyer focus on two key figures in the Darkonian saga -- Kenyon Wells, the leader of the dominant power of the land, and Skip Lipman, a warrior who rallies the game's various factions into open rebellion. Both Wells and Lipman speak frankly about the real-world forces that prompt them to pick up swords and take out their frustrations in fantasy. Wells, who is a business executive during the work week, confesses that the leadership he undertakes in Darkon enables him to better play his day job's corporate game. Lipman, a stay-at-home dad with a perpetually disordered household, presents himself frankly as a tormented soul who is able to gain a handle on his failings by playing the game.





Quarrels and alliances in Darkon extend into the players' lives, and friendships are shown growing and decaying. But the documentary also reveals a sense of kinship that the game's players confess to missing in the real world. As the film's credits roll, the "people of the realm of Darkon" are thanked. Spanning the screen several times over, the list includes males, females, ethnic names and entire families of patronymics. It's a telling portrait of how a diverse community comes together, forged with ideals, imagination and a few well-swung swords. (Not Rated)

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • The Price of Progress
  • The Price of Progress

    The Grand Coulee Dam has created billions in economic activity, but it also devastated local river tribes. What's standing in the way of reparations for the Spokane Tribe?
    • Apr 1, 2015
  • Breaking the Silence
  • Breaking the Silence

    The Carmel of the Holy Trinity nuns live in silence and isolation — but a proposed development could make that difficult
    • Apr 1, 2015
  • Watch List
  • Watch List

    ISIS singles out an Idaho town; plus, Spokane's campaign for paid sick leave
    • Apr 1, 2015
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue
OR7 — The Journey

OR7 — The Journey @ Bing Crosby Theater

April 3-4

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by n/a

  • Iron Upgrade
  • Iron Upgrade

    The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.
    • May 12, 2010
  • Seeing Gay
  • Seeing Gay

    A festival showing GLBT from all angles
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • Get Out the Vote
  • Get Out the Vote

    With all the uncertainty in the world these days, hot wings and cold beer are two things we can get behind
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Why Idaho kids don't go to college

    And what that means for the Gem State
    • Mar 4, 2015
  • New Blood

    Candidates are launching bids for Spokane City Council and could bring big changes to city government
    • Mar 18, 2015
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


Comment


Publisher's Note


marijuana


long reads


© 2015 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation