On Friday, I popped to the BFI in Londontown* to watch a film called Wizard's Way.
Wizard's Way is a comedy about a pair of documentary makers who enter the world of online gaming. They meet Windows, a legendary dragon slayer, and his burger-obsessed friend Barry. As the movie progresses, the footage the filmers capture says more about them than it does about their subjects.
I should declare an interest. I'm an extra in Wizard's Way and I'm mentioned in the credits. I know the production team that made it, so there is less chance of me saying anything negative about this film than Hugh Grant's hopes of getting the lead role in a Rupert Murdoch biopic. Still...
If Wizard's Way doesn't end up rated as one of the funniest films of 2013, I'll eat my wizard's hat. There are so many highlights: Windows' hopeless looks to camera; Barry's earnest culinary exploits, the bickering of the film makers, and the terrible game itself. It's a masterclass in comedy editing: the low-budget production and entirely improvised dialogue is chopped to perfection. It helps that one of their editors also worked on Spaced, Slumdog Millionaire and Les Mis.
The film is also full of heart, turning its social freaks into friends you really care about. And the theme tune. The theme tune. Couldn't stop singing it all weekend.
Wizard's Way won the LOCO Discovery Award 2013, hence the screening, and is listed by LOCO's co-founder as one of the five comedy films to watch for in 2013. If Wizard's Way isn't picked up for distribution this year, I'll not only eat my wizard's hat, I'll shove my wand up somewhere unmagical. Because, although I'm biased, it really is hilarious and I want to see it again.
* Hat doff to my travelling companions Dave and Mark, to Guy and Laura for providing accommodation for the night, and to the numerous drinking chums I kept bumping into.
Further Fats: best movies of 2012