Fan made movies and trailers have been all the rage for years now. Some are adorably low-budget but most are so slick they could almost be better than the real thing.
With SCENE, an exhibition of fan-made sets based on some of Hollywood’s biggest movies coming to Blackpool this July, here’s a look at some of the greatest DIY trailers, re-makes and full series on the world wide web.
Warning: Some of these clips aren’t particularly safe for work or the kids.
1. Super Mario – Real Life Movie Trailer
This indie creation by ‘pixelspersecond’ nails the concept of the real life movie trailer. We need to put the actual Mario Brothers movie aside, as it was rubbish: regardless of what nostalgia tells you. Instead this is the best attempt you’ll see to transpose the paper-thin plot of a vaguely racist 8-bit Japanese classic into something actually watchable.
Warning: Appropriate drug references.
2. Where’s Waldo – Real Life Movie Trailer
Continuing in the same vein, ‘Where’s Waldo’, as he’s known in the States, does its best to inject some action into the world of a harmlessly-jumpered man blending into historical or thematic backgrounds. It pulls it off remarkably well, or better than the Pac Man trailer anyway, which didn’t make this list.
Warning: Extremely bizarre gun violence.
3. Sonic the Hedgehog – Real Life Movie
The ultimate in tenuous fan film concepts, Blue Core Studios’ version of Sonic The Hedgehog, all 18 and a half minutes of it, pulls off the mixture of cheesy graphics and live action with surprising ability. Sonic himself is nothing if not irritating though.
Warning: Quite naff CGI.
4. The Punisher: Dirty Laundry – Short Film
Phil Joanou’s Punisher movie has been viewed no less than eight million times on youtube. Considering the 2004 outing for this fictional anti-hero and ex-servicemen vigilante was lukewarm at best, it’s clear that there’s fan demand for something better. Well shot, with a slow build up and unlikely cameo from Ron Perlman, it’s gory and suitably vengeful.
Warning: Contains effing and jeffing and ridiculous blood effects.
5. Power Rangers – Extended Serious Movie Trailer
Produced by Adi Shankar, the guy behind The Punisher: Dirty Laundry, this attempt to bring some style and grace to the 1990s pseudo-Japanese kids classic is perfectly pitched. The multicoloured cringe-fest benefits from a dystopian future setting, but with an actual re-make on the cards for around 2017, Shankar’s slick effort might be showing up more than one incarnation very soon.
Warning: Contains the deaths of your childhood heroes.
6. Star Trek: Renegades – Full Series
Star Trek’s die hard fans, often a little put off by the new Kirk-based remakes, took matters into their own hands in the desperate scramble for content. Renegades is an admirable attempt to film an entire series of the show, with the odd spin-off actor thrown in, on basically a tenth of the budget – if that. Good in context but panned by the critics.
Warning: Contains very hammy acting.
7. Swede Fest – Fan-made Festival
Worth mentioning as it’s a whole festival of often terrible fan recreations. At the moment Swede Fest is attracting crowds of up to 500 people for its film showings. ‘Swedeing’, or recreating a whole movie scene for scene from scratch, was arguably the point where this whole DIY fandom thing kicked off in the first place. There’s far too many of these too mention and most are quite terrible, but you should check them out for yourself. They’re all linked from the website.
Warning: Sweet but mostly tacky.
8. Raiders of the Lost Ark – Full Sweded Movie
This Vice documentary is the neatest source of online info regarding the two 12-year-old friends who kicked off the Swedeing phenomenon. The attempt by Eric Zala and Chris Strompolos in 1982 to re-shoot the whole of Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom took them a solid eight years to complete and, as rental videos weren’t available back then, required lots of it to be recreated from memory. The original ‘Son of Rambow’.
Warning: Highly delightful and so impressive it’s almost smug.
9. Cereal Killers – Real Life Movie Trailer
Based on one of the oldest puns in the book, this trailer is better appreciated by American audiences. Although the Quakers (of the ‘oats’ fame) is a very adept baddie, the other cereal killers aren’t a patch on the Honey Monster of Tony the Tiger as far as we’re concerned. Also, give their fake trailer for ‘Monopoly‘ a quick look, it’s as another fine example of the genre.
Warning: A bit lost on the average British cereal-user.
10. All the Star Wars ones…
No list of fan-made movies would be complete without mentioning the king daddy franchise, Star Wars. Fans of the original films are fanatic enough but with even reasonable resources behind them, they have managed to create a number of full-length epics. Revan, STAR WARS LEGENDS: Legacy of the Force or Star Wars – Versus: The Way to Shadow are probably the most impressive. The latter certainly. Although the dialogue in Way to the Shadow is somehow even worse than in the originals.
Warning: Uncreative swearing and tacky alien make-up
See for yourself:
If you want to take in some of the best fan made sets, props and costumes from the movies then SCENE at the Blackpool Winter Gardens is running from the July 9-30, 2016. Tickets are £9.95 for adults and just £6.95 for children, for what is the best movie-based family day out outside of the pictures themselves.