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Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine

Director: Vikram Jayanti

2003| Colour| 90 mins| Canada/UK


For the international chess community, it was the stuff of Greek tragedy – possibly even a blow against humanity. Garry Kasparov, arguably the greatest chess player the ancient game has seen, was defeated by IBM’s computer, Deep Blue.
‘It’s about the supremacy of human beings over m a chines in purely intellectual fields. It’s about defending human superiority in an area that defines human beings,’ Kasparov had said prior to the 1997 match. He did not take it lightly.
There is a conspiratorial tone to Vikram Jayanti’s probing film, with its tracking shots that stalk through dark corridors, hushed narration and seditious score. And there is Kasparov, still fiercely bitter about the outcome as he reconstructs his second match against Deep Blue. His first encounter with the supercomputer had taken place in 1996, one year earlier. This was an important, symbolic event in wh i ch Kasparov participated with a spirit of camaraderie, experimentation and amused self-confidence. It was, he admitted, a tough m a t ch, but Kasparov won. ‘Machines are stupid by nature,’ the grandmaster shrugged.
Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine offers an incisive overview of the most notorious chess match ever played, an ultimately unfriendly contest that devolved into psychological wa rfare, paranoia, accusations and defenses.

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