Comic books and various other “nerd” culture may now be more widely accepted than ever before, but that’s mostly because folks can now deal with less hardcore members of that culture. The mainstream may want to interact with tabletop games and heroes in tights, but they sure as hell don’t want to be seen with the stereotypical fan of all that lore.
Zero Charisma takes it cues from that basement underground. And by the hallowed +10 blade of Kervyn’s Folly, it nails it. Perfectly.
As the strict Game Master of a fantasy role-playing game, Scott (Sam Eidson) leads his friends in a weekly quest through mysterious lands from the safety of his grandmother’s kitchen. But his mastery of his own domain starts to slip—along with everything else in his life—when neo-nerd hipster Miles (Garrett Graham) joins the game, winning over the group with his confident charm and dethroning Scott with an unexpected coup. Caught in delusions of grandeur, Scott must roll the dice and risk everything to expose Miles as the fraud he believes him to be. A darkly comedic fable of epic proportions, Zero Charisma is an ode to nerds from every realm.
I’ve been in enough role-playing games to understand how Eidson has perfected the role of the cranky DnD fan who doesn’t take kindly to outsiders. There’s always going to be that one guy who takes his love of the tabletop too far, and I think this film is going to capture it perfectly. Plus I’m pretty sure that I’m going to laugh and cringe when I recognise some of my own habits in that movie.
Zero Charisma is out digitally on October 8. And it’s a rolled a 20 that has captured my attention.
Last Updated: September 17, 2013