What's it About
Creadon's letter-smart documentary takes a behind-the-page look
at Will Shortz, the man who for the past 12 years has been responsible
for creating the formidable New York Times weekend crossword puzzle,
which entertains - and evidently tortures - millions. He also pays a
visit to the nerve-rattling American Crossword Puzzle Tournament and
chats with celebs like Jon Stewart, Bill Clinton, and Ken Burns, who
wax enthusiastic about Shortz's weekly brain benders.
Why we love it
Infectious and fun, "Wordplay" combines an eye-opening portrait of various Times puzzle designers with footage from a competitive crossword tournament organized by the affable, self-effacing Shortz. Breezy and talkative, the film also squeezes in humorous interviews with crossword devotees, addicts, and a few word nerds too smart for their own good. If you're in the mood for a brainy diversion, "Wordplay" more than satisfies.