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Scrabylon (A Scrabble Movie)
Scrabylon
A Scrabble Movie
Actors: Stefan Fatsis, Joel Sherman, Lester Schonbrun, Chris Cree, Ben Loiterstein Greenwood
Genres: Indie & Art House, Special Interests, Documentary
NR     2004     1hr 18min

"Scrabylon" is an award-winning, critically-acclaimed documentary on the cutthroat world of tournament Scrabble®. Featuring the most fierce anagrammers, rack balancers, and bingo experts in competitive Scrabble®, "Scrabylo...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Stefan Fatsis, Joel Sherman, Lester Schonbrun, Chris Cree, Ben Loiterstein Greenwood
Genres: Indie & Art House, Special Interests, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Special Interests, Documentary
Studio: Scrabylon Productions
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 11/24/2004
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 1hr 18min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 6
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Absolutely hilarious
scrbldude | 05/03/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Scrabylon" takes a look at the world of competitive Scrabble players and what a world it is. It's a great companion piece to the book "Word Freak" (the book's author, Stefan Fatsis, gives a brief history of the game, and the director of the National Scrabble Association is featured prominently).

It starts out with some good background info about the game and then introduces some of the top players. Petersen intercuts between the World Championships and several players from around the world (Canada, Thailand, Malta) as they describe their obsession with words, letters, studying and trying to psyche out other players (a cabbie visualizes how certain letters look like objects while another finds an ice scraper on the street and makes a tile rack out of it). It's quite a humanizing portrait of the players and the Scrabble community as a whole. All of the players come across an intelligent and compelling, if a bit unique.

Most "living room" Scrabble players will be surprised to learn that competive players consider it a "math" game as opposed to a "word" game. This is illustrated by former Scrabble prodigy Brian Cappelletto, who is interviewed at his job on the floor of a stock exchange. His co-workers try to stump him in a casual game of anagrams, but he wipes them out quickly. Although the players have considerably different occupations (professional gambler, stay-at-home mom, social worker, teacher, fork-lift salesman), they are all math wizards.

Overall, "Scrabylon" is a fun and quirky bit of Americana and very enjoyable."
Word freaks united!
Boggman! | Laguna Hills, CA | 09/16/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"If your a word game addict such as myself, then "Scrabylon" is an interesting view into the competetive world of Scrabble players and tournaments.

It mostly consists of interviews with the top rated players in the nation....and their thougts and strategies on the game.

It also gives a nice look into the tournament scene, and provides a little background on the history of the game.

Not a whole lot here to make a movie about - but it is a nice look at an interesting subculture

Recommended for word freaks only!!"
A hoot!
funny girl | New York | 08/02/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Late in Scrabylon, "GI Joel" Sherman explains that if he didn't play Scrabble, he'd probably spend most his time sleeping. This is pretty much all you need to know about Scrabble tournament players and their world. They are obsessive and just a little odd. But this movie's strength is that, while it's very funny and charming, it's never condescending to the players. It's quite eye-opening to see how advanced these players are compared to your Mom, friend, co-worker, etc.. Scrabble skills notwithstanding, most viewers will find Scrabylon to be a smart look at a world in which very few will get to personally experience."
Excellent portrayal of a subculture
Yo Yo | Chicago, USA | 05/03/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Most viewers will enjoy this funny little documentary, regardless of their knowledge of U-less Q words. It gives a great overview of the subculture, both in history and the unique members of the subculture. Scrabble champ GI Joel Sherman, an unlikely Scrabble mom, and a guy who drinks vinegar straight from the bottle are highlights. Like the players, Scrabylon has huge amounts of personality and laughs.

The deleted scenes go into a little more detail of how the game is played and the director's commentary provides insight into how the movie was made.

Check it out and bust out the Scrabble set in your closet."