Wrestle Jam

A couple of weeks ago I managed to spend every night of the week at the cinema catching up with the Oscar nominations. While I didn’t get to see the Oscars, as subscribing to Sky movies is daylight robbery, I did manage to see some excellent films such as Frost/Nixon (my movie of the year) and Darren Aronofsky,‘s The Wrestler, otherwise known as Mickey Rourke Strikes Back.

For those not into watching excellent pieces of cinema; The Wrestler is the story of a washed up 1980’s wrestling superstar. Now destitute, Randy ‘The Ram’ Robinson is living life the only way he knows, and how that affects the relationship with his daughter and would-be squeeze. A major part of the film is Randy’s ties to his past fame, with one particular scene showing him and a young boy playing Wrestle Jam ’88, a fictional NES game from The Ram’s heyday. Kotaku ran a great article about the making of this piece of game art, I suggest you read it and be enlightened. I also suggest you see The Wrestler, it is not bobbins.

Apparently Aronofsky demanded a playable game, which was provided by brother and sister team Kristyn Hume and Randall Furino. All in all the game was a lightly featured clone of Wrestlemania, and even had it’s own 8-bit theme song (linked below). I adore this kind of commitment to building a film’s versimilitude, sure you could have run a video of any old game, or cobbled together some footage but here the production team seem to have gone one step further and made a work of homage from something many would consider no more than set dressing. Bravo!

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