Tetris [9/10]

As one of the few souls on this planet who never deigned to play Tetris, the computer and console game that swept the world from the late 80s, I came to the “based on a true story” movie “Tetris” expecting clunky boredom. Not so. From the opening scene, when failing American salesman Henk Rogers tries Tetris at a convention and launches a campaign to gain commercial rights from the Russian founder, this movie sparkles with energy, wit, and perceptiveness. Taron Egerton is unforgettable as the effervescent, driven, yet humane Henk, and the rest of the cast, including Nikita Efremov as the original inventor, is pitch perfect. Interspersed with cheesy but most effective Tetris-style cartoons, we gyrate between coruscating scenes of Robert Maxwell and his son, the video game world in America, the cowboy country of last-days-before-the-collapse-of-the-
Soviet-Union business in Moscow, and Henk’s fairytale home life in Japan. Not a frame is wasted, not a word fails to make a mark. Nothing profound is revealed in Tetris but as unabashed corporate history entertainment, it is one of my favorite viewings of 2023.

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