Rebuttal To “A Critique Of Searching For Bobby Fischer”

by Abe Asher

Recently, you may have seen on this Pulitzer Prize-winning website a story by one Liam W(we can’t print his last name, but if you really want to know what it is ask me and I’ll tell you), criticizing the classic 1993 drama about chess, genius, age, and life, Searching For Bobby Fischer.

Unfortunately, because Liam was untruthful in his prose and very confused in his analysis of the film, The Dig feels the need to print this followup article. I will tell you the true story of what happened, but because things could get ugly as we get further into the tale, I just want to let you know that Liam and I remain good friends — which really means that our marriage is crumbling.

About a month ago, before Winterim and Spring Break, I was sitting next to Liam in Gary Crossman’s PDM class. Because math class drives you to levels of insanity and inanity that you never knew you had, for some reason, I remembered the film Searching For Bobby Fischer, which I saw probably five or six years ago with my family.

Of course, the first thing I did when I remembered Searching For Bob Fisch was tell Liam that it was the greatest movie ever and he needed to see it.

At this point, I was mostly unsure of the accuracy of my assertion that B. Fisch was actually the greatest movie ever, since clearly the new McFarland, USA is the great American movie and everyone else is playing for second, but with a quick trip to YouTube and a look at the movie’s Rotten Tomatoes page, my thoughts were confirmed: Searching For Bobby Fischer is sensational.

How sensational you ask? Let me tell you: It has a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Now let’s try something.

Think of your favorite movie.

Have one? Good.

It doesn’t have a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

So I’m not saying Searching For Bobby Fischer is better than your favorite movie, I’m just reporting some facts.

Anyway, when I told Liam he needed to watch this film, he made a crucial mistake. He went on the internet.

Kids, don’t go on the internet. There are crazy and angry people there. Stay off Mozilla Firefox or whatever it is these days. The ratio of people who comment on message boards and stories are 30 to 1 discontent.

The comments on scenes from Searching For Bobby Fischer are from angry people. Angry chess people. Their probably sitting in their basements in Finland pretending to be Boris Spassky and wondering how the Ottoman Empire fell in the Balkan Wars.

For instance, here’s the top quote on the most famous scene from Searching For Bobby Fischer on YouTube: “Look deep josh it’s there it’s 12 moves away but it’s there, you’ve got him”…as if that guy saw that move and in .002 seconds saw every single variation 12 moves ahead that he could possibly play in an open board end game. LOL This guy must be rated 5400.”

I don’t know, who are you going to trust, Bobby Fischer or the LOL This guy must be rated 5400 guy on YouTube? Well Liam believed the Look deep josh guy and that’s how he became so misguided.

I can assure you that thinking twelve moves ahead is reasonable. Bobby Fischer himself personally confirmed this to me when I met him for a 2002 profile for Rolling Stone. While some considered Bobby mentally unstable at the time, he assured me that the kid knew what he was doing.


I think about people who don’t like Searching For Bob Where Did He Go? the same way I think about people who dislike orange juice, Tom Hanks, and the sun. Abnormal. Sad. Strange. I do not hope to understand them, just to belittle them.

We’ve explored firing Liam from The Dig (by we, I mean I have explored firing him), but apparently some people still like Liam and would not like us if we fired him.



Roger Ebert gave the film four out of four stars, and said it is “a film of remarkable sensitivity and insight”, adding, “by the end of [the film], we have learned […] a great deal about human nature,” AND ROGER EBERT IS A LEGEND.

Anyway, my graduation present to Liam will be a DVD of Searching For Bobby Fischer BUT ONLY IF THE PRICE COMES DOWN FROM $73.44 ON AMAZON BECAUSE IT IS THAT GOOD.

Now I have to leave you and go watch Searching For Bobby Fischer again.

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