Darkon | Chicago Reader


“I care a lot about this country,” says one subject of this 2006 documentary, but he's talking about Mordomia, the medieval fantasyland he defends every other weekend as part of a live-action role-playing game. Gathering on weekends in the woods of suburban Baltimore, the participants dress up, make turgid declarations, and hammer each other with homemade weapons, activities that make them indistinguishable from their preschool children. Almost all of them seem to nurse some terrible pain, from the soldier haunted by Iraq to the former stripper who wants to be in control for once to the obese young man whose only relationships with women have been in the realm of Darkon. Directors Andrew Neel and Luke Meyer treat the participants gently, but most of them know how pathetic they look; though some argue persuasively for the value of fantasy, this gradually becomes an epic of rationalization. 90 min.

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