AN ICONIC BOARD GAME TAKES ON A LIFE OF ITS OWN – AND TAKES OVER THE LIVES OF THREE OBSESSED PLAYERS
THE DUNGEON MASTERS
A Rare Glimpse Into the World of Fanatics and the Powerful and Poignant Effect the Role-Playing Game Has Had on Them Comes to DVD From FilmBuff
New York, NY () – Some board games are merely played. Others are lived. Among the latter, none is more obsessed over than Dungeons & Dragons, the enduringly popular fantasy role-playing board game in which a roll of the oddly angled dice can alter a character’s life. But for some dedicated players, the game has altered their actual lives. Three such fanatics are profiled in THE DUNGEON MASTERS, an eye-opening film from the critically acclaimed director, Keven McAllester (You’re Gonna Miss Me) coming to DVD from FilmBuff and MPI Media Group on August 3, 2010, with an SRP of $19.98.
What the hit comedy feature Role Models did for live-action role-playing game enthusiasts, THE DUNGEON MASTERS does for devoted table-top players. Dungeons & Dragons is no mere game to Richard, Scott and Elizabeth, the people at the center of this entertaining and ultimately moving documentary. Against the backdrop of crumbling middle-class America, these three struggling adults devote their lives to Dungeons & Dragons, the storied role-playing game introduced in 1974. One player is a sanitation worker who lures friends into a “Sphere of Annihilation.” Another is an evil “drow-elf” displaced by Hurricane Katrina. And one is a failed supervillain who starts a cable access show involving ninjas, puppets and a cooking segment.
But the baroque fantasies of these three clash with their mundane real lives, and they gradually come to realize that the game’s imaginary triumphs can’t completely mask the very real disappointments of life. The beauty of Keven McAlester’s film is in revealing his subjects’ real-life heroism: summoning the courage to face hardships head on. Along the way, THE DUNGEON MASTERS reimagines the themes of classic heroic cinema, creating an intimate portrait of struggles and triumphs.
The Austin Chronicle’s Richard Whittaker said of THE DUNGEON MASTERS: “McAlester’s film cuts with sensitivity through the nerdy facade to the dedication its subjects show to their hobby in the toughest of times.” Kevin Kelly of Indiewire called it “a well-crafted film that … gives you an unflinching look at three people who have made gaming one of their creative outlets.”
Since its debut in the 1970s, the role-playing board game Dungeons and Dragons
has sold more than 20 million copies. It has spawned two and dozens of books; all told, sales of the game and related books, DVDs and equipment have surpassed $1 billion.
THE DUNGEON MASTERS was an Official Selection at theand the .