Watched Jun 14, 2012
Nick R’s review:
I watched the BBC4 broadcast of this, which had been brought under the channel's Storyville documentary strand and inexplicably renamed Bobby Fischer: Genius and Madman, which is a far worse title.
The documentary's fascinating. However, at one point it features a tree branch metaphor to illustrate the vast number of move permutations in a game of chess, and a couple of the talking heads suggest that Fischer's problems might have been caused by his mind being rewired through his constant contemplation of something so abstract and immense in scale. In this section, I think, the documentary is in slightly dubious territory.
Possibly the most interesting clip included in the whole documentary is of the start of a 1972 American news broadcast, which begins, "Coming up, more on the Watergate break-ins, and Henry Kissinger's visit to Vietnam... BUT FIRST, Bobby Fischer's world championship chess match." It's amazing to think that there was a time when chess could dominate the news like that!