Game Over: Kasparov And The Machine

The Russian chess genius' trial by computer

Trending Now

OPENS JANUARY 23, CERT TBC, 85 MINS

In 1997, then world chess champion Garry Kasparov played the IBM-designed computer Deep Blue in a six-game match in New York. As he reveals in Vikram Jayanti’s documentary, he didn’t expect to lose. He’d defeated computers before. What he hadn’t realised was how much stock (quite literally) IBM had put on the match. When Deep Blue won the match, the company share price rocketed. Kasparov cried foul.

Jayanti’s fascinating film suffers from a lack of clear identity. The voice-overs belong in a conspiracy thriller, the interviews with computer programmers, grandmasters and journalists hint that this is investigative journalism, while all material about Kasparov’s rise through Soviet chess suggest we’re being offered a profile. Jayanti was a producer of When We Were Kings, and clearly sees Kasparov as the Ali of chess. His subject is charismatic and articulate, but Jayanti fails to answer the key questions his film asks: was the match a fix and, if not, has man now been outstripped by the machine?

Advertisement

Latest Issue

Advertisement

Features

The Waterboys on Room To Roam’s legacy: “We were a lot wilder and more exciting than the record conveyed”

Riding high on the momentum of Fisherman’s Blues, in 1989 The Waterboys reconvened at their new spiritual home in Ireland to make the follow-up. Mike Scott’s plan to broaden the sound didn’t quite go to plan, but as a new box-set reveals, Room To Roam was far from a misfire
Advertisement