By: Oberst Von Berauscht (Three Beers) –
This month on Theme Thursdays we’re going to look at fan films. Fan Films are (usually) short internet films which are produced to unofficially expand and/or parody the universe of existing films, or franchises. Many of these productions have surprisingly high production values, and can be very watchable.
This week we look at Arkham Rising, a fan film which takes on the formidable challange of bridging The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. This five-minute short film serves as a teaser for a proposed series of films that show Bane freeing the inmates of Gotham City’s insane-asylum/prison, of whom the Joker is resident. Give it a watch, and read my review below:
The filmmakers utilized their budget well here, as the costumes/props are all very believable and would have fit in well with Nolan’s film. Also, the voice actor who plays Bane (combined with the sound design) aptly mimics Tom Hardy’s unusual cadence. Indeed, the only obvious signs this wasn’t an official production are the lack of sweeping (Read: Expensive) camerawork, as well as the somewhat claustrophobic sets. Both of these are forgivable given the amateur nature of the production.
The short nature of this film was a bit disappointing, and while it clearly is meant to hint at further entries, it doesn’t provide enough to hook me in. The film stops just at the point it looks like it could get really interesting.
Christopher Nolan has the same problem, admittedly…
The film should have continued just long enough to show more of the Joker. As they’re not played by the original actors, it is crucial for any serious-minded fan film (and aspiring web-series) to catch the viewer’s attention early. And failing to show the Joker in the first episode leaves the viewer wondering if the actor they chose will be good enough to suspend disbelief. Future entries will undoubtedly correct this problem, however if they want people interested in the project, they should have given just a bit more.
Well made, but missing some vital details to go truly viral.
Arkham Rising is too new a Web-series to get a drinking game, if more episodes are produced, we’ll publish one. In the mean time, use your best judgment!