Odds are if you read this site, you are an incredibly huge fan of Raiders of the Lost Ark. It’s pretty much a given. If you love films, especially geek, genre films, then Steven Spielberg and George Lucas‘ introduction of Harrison Ford‘s Indiana Jones character is either right near, or the absolute epitome of, what this little art form we call “film” can do. It’s thrilling, it’s funny, it’s surprising, it’s pretty much perfect in every single way. Plus, it was released long before most of us were eating, drinking and sleeping our love of the art form. For that reason, whenever we can delve into the kind of trivial, behind the scenes minutia that went into making the movie, we have to call it out.

Or, you can now just get all that in one place.

Jamie Benning has been making documentaries, or “filmumentaries” as he likes to call them, based on our favorite films for quite some time. He brings together all the tiny bits of interesting insider information you’ve always heard about Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and now Raiders of the Lost Ark, and puts them in a well-edited, entertaining package that runs along side the main feature becoming almost a visual commentary on the movie. Raiding the Lost Ark is the title of his latest production and while it’s not 100% done, Benning has put the first 17 minutes online. Watch it after the jump. Read More »


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Quality fan films are a needle in a haystack. A haystack made up of bad fan films. It doesn’t take much time or effort to make a bad fan film because anyone with an iPhone can shoot what they think is a Star Wars or Firefly movie. A good one, though, is rare because it’s akin to a real production. It takes dedication, money, talent and even more money. The makers of Star Wars: Dark Resurrection Vol. 0 have all of that. A prequel to a previously released fan film, the 2007 Dark Resurrection Vol. 1, this is a fan film worthy of dropping the word “fan.” Check out the epic 40-minute labor of love after the break. Read More »

Hard to believe that Disney’s live-action period action film The Rocketeer was released two decades ago. The film has come back into the public conscious a bit recently because of the anniversary, its director Joe Johnston doing another period action film (Captain America: The First Avenger) and some recent screenings including one in Hollywood with Kevin Smith hosting a Q&A. Capitalizing on the heat, and as a nod to the character’s late creator Dave Stevens, animator John Banana and his team have created this fantastic little short film. As Gizmodo said, “If Pixar made The Rocketeer, it would look like this.” Check it out after the jump. Read More »

‘Tron: Destiny’ Fan Trailer

We probably won’t see a third Tron film go into production any time soon, nevermind see a traile (however, you never know with the kind of surprises Disney likes to drop at Comic-Con). Some Tron fans have created a movie trailer for a Tron: Legacy sequel titled Tron: Destiny. I would credit them by name, but they insisted on uploading the fake trailer to YouTube, trying to claim that it might be a leaked real deal. Of course, it isn’t. The short trailer, found by ToplessRobot, features a cast of unknowns, some horrible dialogue, but is surprisingly well produced and has a couple cool moments near the end. Watch it now embedded after the jump.

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Take a break from reality for a minute with a couple of trailers for films you’ll never see. Or, as it really goes, trailers for a couple of films you’ll never see that are quite a bit like a great many other films you have seen. The Boston-set movies of the past decade get sent up in The Oscar-Winning Boston Movie, while Riverdale offers a new, ugly perspective on Archie comics. Read More »

Watch a Fan-Made Wolverine Trailer

First up, as the headline should suggest, this is not a trailer for Darren Aronofsky‘s The Wolverine. It does not incorporate any footage that will be in that film, mostly because nothing has been shot. This is the work of commercial and music video director Gary Shore, who cut together animated photo-based storyboards showing Wolverine’s encounter with ninja clan the Hand. The result is something that fans of the character might well enjoy, and it is embedded after the break. Read More »

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

I have good news and bad news. The good news first: Robert Zemeckis is making another move back towards live-action. The bad news: it might be with a remake of The Wizard of Oz, which Warner Bros. is attempting to assemble. And while this might not be a shot for shot remake a la Gus Van Sant and Psycho, the idea is awfully close, as the studio wants to use the script from the 1939 version. Read More »

VOTD: The Solo Adventures

Finally, someone has released a worthy Star Wars prequel. But it comes in the form of a Star Wars fan film, an animated short film titled The Solo Adventures which was created for the Star Wars Fan Film Movie Challenge. The film, directed by Daniel Smith and Jeff Scheetz, won Best Animated Film at Celebration V. So what is the hort film about? Well… it follows Han Solo and Chewbacca and finally explains why Solo ditched Jabba’s precious cargo prior to Episode IV. Watch the short film (in 3D) embedded after the jump.
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There are so many bad Star Wars fan films that I often don’t make it through the first minute of these reader submitted or posted short films. The films are often made by first time filmmakers who have never tried to shoot and put together a short film, nevermind one full of costumes, computer generated special effects, action stunt-work and compositing. I’m not saying that Fed Wetherbee’s Star Wars: A Light in The Darkness is the best I’ve seen (it certainly isn’t) but it is better than most.

Sure, it has some bad acting and cheesy voice over, but at its core, it is a short film created with heart. They might not have had the money to build Hollywood-level sets, but the minimal cardboard-constructed sets were enough to set the mood and transport me to another world. The film isn’t just another excuse for another well choreographed lightsaber battle. It has a story which fits in with the canon of the Star Wars series, and tries to win you over. If it does, who knows? I’m not sure it will win everyone over, but it was enough to keep me tuned in for the entire 20 minute short film — which is saying a lot. I want to see what happens in Part 2, and hope they cut the dialogue screnes down a bit next time around. Watch the part one of the short film now embedded after the jump.
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