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Wordplay (2006)

Director: Patrick Creadon     Starring: Shortz,Will
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Format: DVD
Sku: 202988239
UPC: 796019796156
UPC 14: 00796019796156
Rating: Game Rating Code
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An in-depth look at the new york times' long-time crossword puzzle editor will shortz and his loyal fan base.
Editor's Note
Inky-fingered New York Times readers love the mind-bending crossword puzzles lovingly curated for the paper by longstanding contributor Will Shortz. There are few things more satisfying than completing one of Shortz's puzzles, and a cult has sprung up around the enigmatic crossword compiler as Times readers put pen to paper and attempt to pick his brains. Director Patrick Creadon has capitalized on this phenomenon with the film WORDPLAY, a genial documentary based on Shortz and his devoted followers. Creadon begins by tracing Shortz's unusual ascent to his tenure at the Times, creating a picture of an easygoing, well-liked, and respected man. Creadon also takes viewers on a trip to the 28th annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, a geek haven where Shortz assumes godlike status. Indeed, it was Shortz himself who created the contest, and he still presides over it, demonstrating a great deal of affection for the tournament and its participants. As we witness the various eccentrics battling it, some of Shortz's celebrity fans get plenty of camera time, THE DAILY SHOW's Jon Stewart and former president Bill Clinton among them. Clinton even recalls an amusing occasion when a particularly tricky election-day puzzle left readers wondering whether "Clinton" or "Bob Dole" was the seven-letter solution to one of Shortz's clues--in fact some clever juggling of letters meant that both answers could have been correct. An enjoyable movie that even manages to make the crossword tournament a gripping affair, WORDPLAY succeeds largely thanks to its immensely likeable central figure and the behavior of the kooky contestants at the tournament.


Video Features DVD

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Universal (Music)
Video Release Date Release Date: 4/24/2007
Video Play Time Running Time: 94 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 2006
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 79615
Video UPC UPC: 00796019796156
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: English
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: English
Video Color Spec Video: Color
Entertainment Reviews
Expert Review Wordplay - DVD Review
By: Anne Gilbert DVD Reviews
Published on: 11/17/2006 12:32 AM
I am not particularly a puzzler, but Wordplay, Patrick Creadon’s ode to crossword makers and lovers is so reverent and infectious, it’s hard not to get caught up in the desire to put letters in all the empty boxes – in pen. I have never so badly wanted to finish a the full review

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Patrick Walsh - Producer
Video Cast Info Bob Dole - Featured
Video Cast Info Mike Mussina - Featured
Video Cast Info Christine O'Malley - Screenwriter
Video Cast Info Ken Burns - Featured
Video Cast Info Jon Stewart - Featured
Video Cast Info Vic Fleming - Music
Video Cast Info Peter Golub - Music
Video Cast Info Pres. Bill Clinton - Featured
Video Cast Info Will Shortz - Featured
Video Cast Info Patrick Creadon - Director

Professional Reviews

Box Office
4 stars out of 5 -- "[B]right, concise and to the point. It's written in confident ink, not maybe or maybe-not pencil." 06/01/2006 p.58

Entertainment Weekly
"[An] amiable braniacs-are-cool documentary..." -- Grade: B 06/23/2006 p.52

Rolling Stone
3 stars out of 4 -- "There's more palm-sweating suspense in one minute of this baby than in all of THE OMEN....Shortz makes an amiable focus for the brain-spinning fun on display." 06/29/2006 p.78

Product Attributes

Product attributeActor:   Shortz,Will
Product attributeLabel:   Genius Products Inc.
Product attributeMusic Format:   DVD
Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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