The Best Half-Life Fan Films
Fan films are generally terrible. Search your feelings padawan, you know this to be true. The makers of the film are usually so obsessed with whatever property they’re adapting for their film that their reverence takes a front seat to whatever skills they may otherwise have, leading fan films to feel more like an act of religious devotion rather than an attempt to test your abilities as a filmmaker on a property you have a lot of familiarity with. See Batman: Dead End for a perfect example of the worst excesses of fan films. (It is for this reason that the good fan films tend to be the ones that poke fun of the franchise in some way, like Troops.)
Sometimes, however, whether or not the film contains shining examples of the things that make watching fan films so terrible, the otherwise exceptional high quality – particularly in the face of low budgets, unskilled actors or amateur production techniques – makes the film a delight, if only because you have to admire the love and skill that went into it. And for some reason, the Half-Life community is just The Best at this. In honor of that, we’d like to showcase 5 of the best Half-Life Fan Films.
1) Singularity Collapse
Created by an outfit called Super Punch, this clever video blew up last summer when it emerged seemingly from nowhere. It doesn’t have the best action, but it’s in first person, it definitely takes place in the HL universe, and the effects are surprisingly off the chain.
2) официальный трейлер фильма “Freeman`s days. Day One”
We flagged this one a couple of weeks back. официальный трейлер фильма, “Freeman`s days. Day One” is a pretty swank Russian-made Half-Life fan series slated for release sometime later this year. This is just the trailer. Even so, damn. Set during the Half-Life timeline and largely following the game‘s story, it’s likely to be a slow-going series. As you can see, they’re taking great care to make this thing look great. We’ll definitely be looking forward to watching.
3) Half-Life: Origins (Live Action)
Another video that blew up last year, Half-Life: Origins is a look at the series beginning with some smart live action and decent effects. As Game Bandits points out, this isn’t a substitute for HL3, but it’ll do in a pinch. And they’re right, it’s pretty amazing.
4) Beyond Black Mesa
This one’s a doozy, a good one. Set at the beginning of the Half-Life series, this one follows a group of survivors, including Adrian Shepherd, as they experience the disaster at Black Mesa and try to alert the world to the threat. SPOILER ALERT: The World kind of ends anyway.
5) Escape From City 17
Directed by The Purchase Brothers, Escape From City 17 is an amazing fan film series, now in two parts. Part one dropped back in 2009 and was created on a teeeny tiny budget, largely as a spec for the pair’s demo reel. It was widely acclaimed however, so, though it took nearly two years, and a lot of love, part 2 finally arrived in 2011. The series concerns the battle for City 17 (from half-Life 2), and it’s amazing. Enjoy.