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Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest – Hot Docs 2021

A veteran gamer attempts to play for 100 hours in a single stretch in . Kim “Cannon Arm” Købke is a Danish man, who has been an avid player of arcade games since 1977. Kim regularly gathers with his friends at the Bip Bip Bar and plays his game of choice Gyruss for hours on end. Kim's best record playing Gyruss on a single coin is 49 hours, however, he decides to make a serious attempt at achieving his lifelong goal of playing for 100 hours straight.

Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest is a film directed by Mads Hedegaard, who admits in his narration that he knows practically nothing about arcade games or gamers. Mads is a member of the group of friends that joins Kim at the Bip Bip Bar in Copenhagen, which also includes bearded Puzzle Bobble champion and poet Dyst, Kim's best friend and Bach theorist Carsten, and Icelandic Donkey Kong expert Svavar. Together, the friend help Kim prepare as it attempts to play Gyruss for four days straight.

In some ways, Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest can be seen as the Danish-made spiritual sequel to 2007's The King of Kong, with the film even making mention of Twin Galaxies' Walter Day and champion gamer Billy Mitchell, the latter of whom receives a drunken phone call by the group of friends at one point in the film. While the ultimate goal of Kim “Cannon Arm” Købke of playing Gyruss for 100 hours is one to stand behind, the film is marred by scenes of filler that focus more on Carsten's analysis of Bach than anything to do with video games. That said, the silver-haired, mullet-sporting Kim is still a memorable film subject that makes Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest somewhat worth the time.

Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest is streaming as part of the 2021 Hot Docs Film Festival


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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

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