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  1. 21 Sep '15 01:51
    This was on the unofficial English Forum, I've whisked it across
    to here because I know some are keen to see this movie.

    ---

    Sam writes:


    I was invited to an advanced screening of the movie Pawn Sacrifice held
    on Thursday, August 13, 2015 at 10AM in New York City, based on the
    fact that I had been a close friend of Bobby Fischer.

    I was invited to the screening by Katherine Matthews. Only three other
    people were there. Two were non-chess players who work for Chess in
    the Schools. I do not know if other advanced screenings were held.

    After the screening, I sent my comments on the movie as follows:

    The movie was wonderful, marvelous. It brought tears to my eyes.
    I had no idea it would be so good.

    It accurately depicted the turmoil going on within Fischer and the turmoil
    going on outside of him while he was on his way to the World Championship.

    The movie is intended to provide entertainment and not to be historically
    accurate. However, there are mistakes in the movie and it would be best
    to have them corrected, if possible, before the release of the movie in
    September 2015.

    The movie calls the Chief Arbiter Wolfgang Schmid. His actual name
    was Lothar Schmid. I see you have corrected it on the website but it
    needs to be corrected in the sound track too.

    Carmine Nigro who was Bobby's first and only teacher was not one of
    the top 25 rated players in the country. He was a Class B player but did
    not have an official rating. The movie depicts him as being with Bobby
    all the way from the beginning in about 1949 to the Fischer Spassky
    Match in Reykjavik Iceland in 1972. In reality, Carmine Nigro had only a
    brief relationship with Fischer lasting only a few years at most.

    William Lombardy will not like the way he is depicted but that is his own
    fault as he refused to cooperate in the making of the movie.

    It shows Lombardy first meeting and becoming involved with him at the
    time of the Olympiad in Yugoslavia. That is not true. I first met both
    Fischer and Lombardy together at the November, 1956 Eastern States
    Open Chess Championship in Washington DC, so Fischer and
    Lombardy were together at that time.

    You scan see our pictures together at

    http://www.anusha.com/post1956.htm

    The movie shows Lombardy continuously involved with Fischer from
    their first meeting until the 1972 match. Not true. Lombardy dropped out
    of chess in 1961 after deciding to become a Catholic Priest. He did not
    become involved with Fischer again until the time of the 1972 match. In
    between those years Fischer was mostly involved with Grandmaster
    Larry Evans.


    It says that Fischer won his first round game against Grandmaster
    Ivanovich at the 1966 Piatigorsky Cup in Los Angeles. This is not true.
    There is no Grandmaster Ivanovich. Fischer's first win in that
    tournament was against Grandmaster Ivkov in Round 3.

    It says Fischer defeated Korchnoi in Round 5 of that event. This is not
    true. Korchnoi never played in the Piatigorsky Cup. Fischer did defeat
    Korchnoi in two earlier tournament games in 1962 but never defeated
    him in a tournament game after that.

    It shows Paul Marshall informing Fischer that Nixon had tried to call him
    three times but had been unable to reach him because Fischer had
    taken apart the telephone receivers searching for bugs in the telephone.
    I doubt this is true.

    It says that they had found bugs in Fischer's room during the Interzonal
    chess tournament in Tunisia. I do not think this is true but I am sure
    Fischer was concerned about the Soviets and others spying on him.

    It shows lawyer Paul Marshall first meeting Fischer in the park and then
    being involved with him for years leading up to the 1972 match. I do not
    know when Paul Marshall first met Fischer but I do not believe they had
    such a long relationship.

    It shows Fischer's mother having a man sleep with her in the apartment
    disturbing Fischer while he is trying to study chess. I would like to know
    the source for this. You should not put such a salacious thing in a movie
    unless you are sure of your source.

    It shows Fischer analyzing the moves 1. P-KR4 P-KR4 Ridiculous. You
    should take that out. Have Fischer studying 1. P-K4 P-K4 instead.

    It shows Fischer's virginity being lost to a street prostitute in Los
    Angeles. This becomes the love interest in the movie. Fischer's first
    known encounter with a woman was with a prostitute but it was in
    Argentina. Grandmaster Larry Evans brought Fischer to a whorehouse.
    Fischer lost his chess game right after that and had the worst
    tournament in his life. Fischer never mixed sex and chess again.

    It correctly shows the most famous move ever made, Fischer's blunder
    in Game 1 with 29. …. BxKRP. Spassky replied 30. P-KN3. However,
    the movie shows Fischer resigning immediately in disgust. In reality,
    Fischer did not resign then and was not yet lost. Fischer made another
    mistake. He could have drawn the game with 40. … K-Q4. The game
    continued until move 56. This is one of the most famous games ever
    played, so every chess player will recognize that you made a mistake
    when you say that Fischer resigned after 30. P-KN3.

    These little mistakes will cause chess playing viewers to deride the movie.

    Others will say that this that person or this or that event or incident
    should be included in the movie. I disagree. The story line should be
    simple and easy for non-chess players to follow.

    Having more characters would not help anything. I think the producers
    of this movie did a great job.

    Sam Sloan
  2. 21 Sep '15 10:37
    Thanks for that GP. I'll definitely go and see the film if it comes within spitting distance of Oxford.

    I really like Sam Sloan, although many people don't. He has a real love for chess and writes about it well.
  3. Subscriber venda
    Dave
    21 Sep '15 11:25
    Originally posted by Data Fly
    Thanks for that GP. I'll definitely go and see the film if it comes within spitting distance of Oxford.

    I really like Sam Sloan, although many people don't. He has a real love for chess and writes about it well.
    U.K release date is December 4th this year
  4. Standard member Wulebgr
    Angler
    21 Sep '15 17:22
    Originally posted by Data Fly

    I really like Sam Sloan, although many people don't. He has a real love for chess and writes about it well.
    He did in this case. I cannot recall the last time that I was able to say that.
  5. 21 Sep '15 21:19 / 1 edit
    I know so much about
    Fischer (even to spell his name with ""c, altså Fischer, not fisherman)
    Nabokov
    Hitchock
    that always makes me sad and angry when some try to talk about them without real knowledge.

    I knew that Fischer had some love affair in Buenos Aires 1960, because even cold and sober Vladimir Vukovic mentioned it in an issue of Chess Messenger in 1960 (I have almost all issues of Chess Messenger, (yelowish paper, smell of library...)

    In a book that I wrote in Croatian for 5 years ago, I used this fact (if honourable Vukovic wrote this, it had to be a fact) and used Fischer as a cameo in Buenos Aires.

    I am surprised they didn't use the popular legend about teeth filings in the film.

    But, mathematicians and chess players will always be unfaithfully depicted in films.
  6. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    21 Sep '15 21:51
    I half expected Sam Sloan to automatically deride the movie. The fact that he did not speaks volumes for the quality of the movie, in my opinion.

    I definitely agree with him about getting names right, but I am OK with how they depict the blunder in game two of the 1972 match. Most non-chess players would be confused about the idea of adjournments and "deferred resignations", so I can understand the director wanting to simplify it for the story.

    It's a movie, not a documentary, so a little license is OK in my opinion.
  7. 21 Sep '15 23:38
    That's what I'm inclined to think Paul although Fischer looking
    1.h4 h5. seems a bit off. Did they not consult any chess player.

    1.h4. 'Best by test' does not have the same clout.

    The rest I'll go along with but that will be brought up a few times.
    (as will the 'Best by test' joke)
  8. 23 Sep '15 01:20
    I also attended a NYC screening of the movie ... I'd say 40 to 50 in the audience, several notable chess players, authors, and coaches. In fact, three of the attendees played Fischer long ago.
  9. 23 Sep '15 12:37
    Hi Tony

    What did you think of it?
  10. Standard member bill718
    Enigma
    24 Sep '15 14:50 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    This was on the unofficial English Forum, I've whisked it across
    to here because I know some are keen to see this movie.

    ---

    Sam writes:


    I was invited to an advanced screening of the movie Pawn Sacrifice held
    on Thursday, August 13, 2015 at 10AM in New York City, based on the
    fact that I had been a close friend of Bobby Fischer.

    I w ...[text shortened]... ers would not help anything. I think the producers
    of this movie did a great job.

    Sam Sloan
    Interesting thoughts on the movie. I'm having a difficult time however understanding why Sam Sloan would give this movie such a glowing review, while at the same time acknowledging it had many inaccuracies that could easily have been corrected. It seems the artistic temperament is more concerned with style than with substance. I'll wait for it to come out on Netflix.