Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine

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A clumsy documentary that tells a fascinating story, this 2003 Canadian-UK feature chronicles the 1997 defeat of world chess champion Garry Kasparov by IBM's Deep Blue supercomputer in Manhattan. After Kasparov lost the second game of the match, he suggested that IBM was cheating, and in fact Deep Blue's play had been remarkably creative for a chess computer. Shooting on video (later transferred to 35-millimeter), director Vikram Jayanti shows Kasparov revisiting the hotel suite that served as his home base and collects reminiscences from journalists and members of the team that programmed Deep Blue. The film labors to suggest a corporate conspiracy, with whispered voice-over as a camera tours the IBM offices, and superfluous clips from the 1927 silent The Chess Player contribute to the lumpiness of the narrative. But it's still an engrossing tale of ego, strategy, and the limits of human intelligence. 90 min. Facets Cinematheque.

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