There are so many of us who are fans. Whether you are a fan of a sports team, director, author or radio personality, you want to see the very best of what they have to offer. This goes for comic book fans as well. In recent years, comic book movies have owned the box office. There has never been a greater time to be a comics fan.
However, there is nothing worse than going out to see the film adaptation of one of your favorite comics only to find that it is a huge disappointment, or watching the property linger in development hell.
What with the epically dark Power Rangers fan film circulating around the Internet lately (which sadly just got pulled), I thought I'd round up some of the great comic book fan films. Because there are a lot of them. While they may not have the production value of a major studio, fan films can truly the best interpretation of their characters ever.
Filled with many missteps, X-Men Origins: Wolverine was by far one of the weakest films in the X-Men collection. One of its biggest crimes was the way that it treated Ryan Reynolds and his portrayal of Marvel’s ever popular Merc with a Mouth, Deadpool. Reynolds was spot on at the beginning of the film, but by the time the movie was over, everything that is great about Deadpool was stripped from the character, including Reynolds who was replaced by martial artist and stuntman Scott Adkins. Deadpool: A Typical Tuesday rights many of those wrongs including allowing the red and black garbed assassin the opportunity to break the fourth wall as he does so often in his comics. This should hold fans over until 2016 when Deadpool hits the big screen again.
Director Sandy Collora is best known in the comic world for his short film Batman: Dead End in which the Dark Knight fights against The Joker and a Predator, but his trailer for World’s Finest is perhaps his best work. Fans have been dying to see Batman and Superman up on the big screen together for decades. These are, after all, two of the most recognizable comic book characters of all time. This trailer pits The Man of Steel and the Caped Crusader against Lex Luthor and Two Face. Once again, 2016 is the year where fans will have their dreams come true with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, but until then, there is always this great fan film.
One of those stuck in production hell films is the adaptation of Y: The Last Man. Many have attempted to get this great comic about a virus which wipes all men off of the face of the earth to the big screen, but all have failed. This short follows the events of the first few issues of the comic and is fairly accurate to the source material. It will only be a matter of time before Y gets its day and the people who made this film can say they beat Hollywood to the punch.
Punisher: Dirty Laundry
There have been three attempts to bring The Punisher to the big screen. One of Marvel’s darkest heroes, Frank Castle, is also one of the hardest to get right on screen. The main problem is that to do this character justice, requires the ability of everyone involved to make the audience care about a hardened killer. Arguably the best of these three attempts was the Thomas Jane, John Travolta film from 2004. Though it had many short comings, it was an overall enjoyable movie. Dirty Laundry is a follow up in many ways to that film and though it has no studio backing, this fan film manages an impressive feat, getting Jane to reprise his role as the titular character. Before you click on the link, fair warning, this is a very dark short film and if the MPAA were to rate it, there is no doubt that it would earn a hard R.
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have conquered both the small and the big screen. Some of the adaptations of Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird’s comic book have been great, and some of them have been lacking. This fan made short brings the Turtles back to live action in fighting form. Matching the darkness of the original comics, Fight the Foot lasts just long enough to leave its audience begging for more.
One of the first comics to come out from Image Comics was Todd McFarlane’s Spawn. This comic follows the trials of resurrected solider Al Simmons as he attempts to fight the forces of Heaven and Hell. In 1997, Michael Jai White wore the symbiotic suit of the anti-hero, but that movie fell a little bit flat even for McFarlane. There have been rumors for years about another attempt to get Al back in the theaters. Though not a household name like some of the rest of the previously mentioned characters, Spawn has some great visual appeal, as shown by this fan made film.