“I love the power glove. It’s so bad!”
Starring Fred Savage and Christian Slater, The Wizard was destined to be a horrible film. Nonetheless, I’ll have to add it to my list of films I embarrassingly enjoy.
If you’ve never seen The Wizard, imagine watching a commercial for Nintendo… for 100 minutes. This film would seem it would of fit in better in the wee hours of the morning between infomercials for Blue Blockers and Mr. Popeil’s Spaghetti Maker rather than the big screen at you local Megaplex. But that’s where it wound up, for a couple of weeks anyway, before it was yanked from the silver screen and made it’s way to the VHS bargain bin.
The Wizard tells the story of two kids. Fred Savage and his younger brother Jimmy, who seems to suffer for extreme shyness or something. The kid doesn’t seem to ever speak, which automatically makes him the best character in the film.
Anyway, Jimmy apparently one day scores 5000 points while playing Double Dragon. That, apparently, is enough reason for the both of them to run away to compete in a Video Game tournament in California. Somehow along the way they meet some girl to balance the cast out.
Oh yes, there is some more of a plot, but I forget most of it. Why? It’s not important. The plot gets about five second of film time, anymore and their just would not have been enough time for Nintendo to plug all their crap.
The only thing you really need to know is that for some reason there’s some dude trying to capture Jimmy. At one point he almost succeeds, but that quick thinking stray girl they picked up comes up with an idea to stop him (she must have some point in this story). How? She simply yells out, “He touched my breast!” Which of course draws attention to the evil-doer by people in the area. I guess yelling, “Hey, that guy is kidnapping a child,” wouldn’t of sufficed.
Yeah, in case you couldn’t tell, this story is full of important morals for kids to learn. So far these kids have run away from home and used false sexual harassment claims to get your way. But wait, there’s more:
The kids also make money by gambling in a casino and hustling business men at video games. Wow.
Somewhere along the way they meet a kid named Lucas. And he’s cool. So cool. You want to know why? He’s got a Power Glove! That stupid NES controller that every kid wanted, but worked about as well as just wearing a regular glove and made you look like the biggest dumbass in the world. Somehow our heroes of the story are shocked by this glove. “What is that?” they ask. What is that? What is that!? Don’t these kids watch commercials? It’s a god damn Power Glove. Now respect the damn kid who looks like a dumbass.
Jimmy apparently gets major freaked out by the Power Glove and runs to a vacant lot to stack popcorn boxes. Yeah… I don’t know.
Popcorn stacking aside, the biggest deal about this movie may have been the ending when they showed off Super Mario Bros. 3 for the first time. Yep, who needs E3 anyway, every big game should just be shown off at the end of a movie. Perhaps they should spotlight the next Mario Party Game at the end of Harry Potter, it’d be much better than an actual finale to the story.
This may have been a big deal to all those 10 year olds in audience at the movie theater, but it meant absolutely nothing to me since I saw it a year later on rented VHS and had already been playing the game for months. In fact it only pissed me off since somehow Jimmy found the first secret whistle the first time he ever played the game, and first time I played I died from falling in a hole (which was quite embarrassing since it was at an arcade machine in the local McCorrie’s, with a bunch of cooler kids laughing at me looking over my shoulder… although, as I think about it now those kids were about as cool as Lucas). The kid was an obvious cheater, adding another bad moral for kids.
But I digress. Next time you see this film rerunning on Encore, stop and have a look. It’s a nice stroll down memory lane to when the NES was the coolest thing in the world, and since they don’t rerun old video game commercials, this is all we got.