Monday, October 5, 2015

Pawn Sacrifice Fischer Movie

I enjoyed the "Pawn Sacrifice" movie about Bobby Fischer. The chess was accurate in its flavor and presented critical moves. Tobey Maguire as Fischer and Liev Schreiber as Boris Spassky fit great. Key characters are Regina Fischer (mother), Joan Fischer (sister), Carmine Nigro (teacher), Paul Marshall (lawyer), Father Bill Lombardy (grandmaster) and a girl ("Donna").

"Based on" movies slightly alter history to sell the best story instead of being a boring documentary. Here they built up Boris Spassky to make him a rival at Varna 1962 and world champion at the Piatagorsky in California a few years before he won the title.

Actually, at Varna 1962 Fischer drew world champion Botvinnik on board 1. Spassky was on board 3. The star was Tigran Petrosian on board 2 who later beat Botvinnik in 1963. Petrosian defended his title beating Spassky in 1966. Boris Spassky did not become world champion until 1969. In 1971 Fischer had to beat Petrosian to play Spassky.

Boris Spassky's famous crush of Fischer in 1960 and draws they played prior to 1972 did not make this story. Nothing is said of Pal Benko stepping aside to give Fischer his cycle spot. They do not mention that Fischer was higher rated in 1972. Minor details.

The movie has Fischer resign Game 1 dramatically after sacrificing his bishop. In reality, Bobby played on for a long time and almost drew it. Fischer took a lead in the match on Game 6 with 1.c4 which he only played a few times before. Boris Spassky applauded the win. Here is that Queens Gambit game.

Fischer - Spassky, Ch World (match) Reykjavik (Iceland) (6), 1972 begins 1.c4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.d4 Nf6 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bg5 0-0 6.e3 h6 7.Bh4 b6 8.cxd5!? [Both 8.Bd3 and 8.Be2 score better than Fischer's move.] 8...Nxd5 9.Bxe7 Qxe7 10.Nxd5 exd5 11.Rc1 Be6 12.Qa4 c5 13.Qa3 Rc8 14.Bb5!? [The natural move 14.Be2 is more popular and scores better for White.] 14...a6 [14...Qb7!=] 15.dxc5 bxc5 16.0-0 Ra7 [16...Qb7=] 17.Be2 Nd7 18.Nd4 Qf8 19.Nxe6 fxe6 20.e4! [Pawn Sacrifice] 20...d4 [20...dxe4] 21.f4! Qe7 22.e5 Rb8 23.Bc4 Kh8 24.Qh3 Nf8 25.b3 a5 26.f5 exf5 27.Rxf5 Nh7 28.Rcf1 [Fischer did not fall for Spassky's trap 28.Rf7? Ng5!-+ and Black turns the tables.] 28...Qd8 29.Qg3 Re7 30.h4 Rbb7 31.e6 Rbc7 32.Qe5 Qe8 33.a4 Qd8 34.R1f2 Qe8 35.R2f3 Qd8 36.Bd3 Qe8 37.Qe4 Nf6 38.Rxf6 gxf6 39.Rxf6 Kg8 40.Bc4 Kh8 41.Qf4! 1-0

London 2.Bf4 Playbook: How to begin. London 2.Bf4 Tactics: How to win quickly.

Sets: Chess Games 1.e4 Series and Chess Games 1.d4 Series
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