Shall We Play A Game?


This year WarGames turns 25. I can’t remember how old I was when I first saw it. I pretty sure it was on tv. Considering it was released in theaters when I was 6, I doubt my parents let my brother and I go to a techno-thriller where a kid nearly starts world war 3. Whenever the blessed event finally happened, it was love at first sight. Like a lot of classic 80’s movies it had the two great fears of the decade:

1. The threat of nuclear war


2. The machines are taking over.

The vague notion that the US and USSR may blow each other to pieces grabbed my interest. Plus it had all this techno stuff I had never heard of before.

Computers can talk to each other! Backdoor passwords? This stuff was all new to me (as it was to many people) and I loved it. I felt so smart knowing what a modem was. The first time I heard one work (while signing onto AOL) I immediately thought of David Lightman. (Right after which I thought, “Man I wish I had Falken’s remote controlled dinosaur.”)   Plus it had Matthew Broderick. I will readily admit that as a young lad I had a man crush on him. Let’s face it, the guy was (and possibly still is) the shit. By the time I saw WarGames I had already seen him in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Project X (which how I learned to say “apple” and “help” in sign language) . He had a synth that made sneezing noises and he trained chimps to fly planes. What 10 year wouldn’t think he’s awesome.

When I realized a while ago I could get it onDemand, I watched it several times. My girlfriend thought I was being goofy or watching it for cheese factor but I wasn’t. I still enjoy it. Now I found out that not only am I not in the minority in thinking that it’s good but it’s now being called a classic! I first found out when AMC started showing it in honor of this anniversary. (It is called Amercian Movie CLASSICS.) Then I found out (to late) that it was being shown in theaters for one day only.  Then an article Wired Magazine calls it a classic! So it isn’t just me! There’s even a 25th anniversary dvd release and a crappy direct to dvd sequel! Take that Tremors!

The Wired article  also made a point that had never occured to me. David Lightman is the first real geek hero. He was hacking into government computers while getting Ally Sheedy hot and bothered. So congratulations WarGames not only are you a classic but you are sort of the Rosa Parks of geeks.


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