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It gives Canon Arm a unique feel. Video game documentaries are informational and/or nostalgic. While there may be personalities introduced, there is not much for a personal relationship with the characters. The most intimate information about Kim and his friends are revealed. It makes it easier to get involved as it is more about seeing someone break a record. Viewers will be emotionally invested.
Getting so initiate with Kim’s friends leads to one of the issues with the documentary. Since there are so many people to deal with, Canon Arm can sometimes go on tangents. As interesting as things can get, it is a lot to process. Hedegaard is willing to go deep into the lives of his friends, but getting back to the point – even the friendships – can be a little difficult.
Which is not to say the film does not provide the sense of nostalgia usually found. It actually manages to do so better than similar movies. It does not just rely on the viewers familiarity with arcade games. The soundtrack includes Iron Maiden and Bonnie Tyler. Since much of Canon Arm takes place in the Bip Bip Bar, that there are plenty of neon lights to invoke the feel of yesteryear.
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Overall, Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest is a great look at the retro gaming scene. By looking at a group of friends, it makes its tale more intimate. This is not a documentary about a bunch of nerds or a history of arcade games. While there are elements of that, it is about friends and doing amazing things. The writing is beautiful and the end credits provide some of the most emotional moments of the movie.
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