MVD Visual’s New ‘Raiders’ Fan Flick Doc Is A Treasure For Cinephiles, ‘Raiders’ Fans Alike

Courtesy: MVD Visual/MVD Entertainment Group

Courtesy: MVD Visual/MVD Entertainment Group

Imitation, it is often said, is the sincerest form of flattery.  That is why in the entertainment world, thousands of people every year dress up as their favorite TV and movie characters and why just as many people set out every year to make their own fan-made versions of their favorite TV shows and movies.  Late last month MVD Visual, a division of MVD Entertainment Group, released a new documentary on one of those countless fan made films in the form of Raiders!: The Story of The Greatest Fan Film Ever Made.  This documentary is a gripping story of one group of people’s dreams and their drive to make their dreams come true.  That story is the central element of this recently released documentary and goes a long way toward making it worth the watch.  While the program’s central story gives viewers plenty of reason to watch this doc, its editing sadly detracts from the program’s presentation to a point.  That cannot be ignored.  Of course it doesn’t make the program completely unwatchable.  The movie’s bonus material makes up for that one negative and makes for even more reason to watch this doc.  All things considered, MVD Visual’s new documentary Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made proves in the end to be a presentation that any true cinephile should see at least once.

MVD Visual’s new documentary Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made is a presentation that every cinephile should see at least once.  That is the case even if audiences disagree about which is the greatest fan film ever made.  That is due in no small part to the story at the center of the documentary.  The story focuses on three men who set out as boys to recreate Steven Speilberg’s cinema masterpiece Raiders of the Lost Ark.  It follows the story of the then boys’ seven-year journey to create their own adaptation of that now legendary action flick and what happened to their relationships as the years passed.  From fighting over a woman as boys, to one of the men almost losing his job as a result of the attempt to recreate just one scene that the trio never accomplished, the story follows the trio’s journey warts and all.  It doesn’t pull any punches.  The end result is a story that interestingly enough screenwriters look for when they look for major blockbusters.  It is one of those underdog stories that results in dreams achieved in the end.  Considering this, the story at the center of Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made gives audiences plenty of reason to see this new doc from MVD Visual.  As much as its story does to interest audiences, the program’s presentation is sadly not perfect.  The program’s editing does detract from its presentation to a point.  There is no denying this.

The story at the center of Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made is the stuff that producers and screenwriters from Hollywood’s “Big Six” dream of.  It is an underdog story that results in dreams realized in the end even being a documentary.  That in itself gives audiences plenty of reason to check out this presentation.  Of course as much as the story does to make the program worth the watch, its editing detracts from the presentation to a point.  There are a lot of jump cuts in some of the interview segments.  The jump cuts that are used are used so much at points that it becomes almost uncomfortable to watch.  Other interview segments are cut short due to fade in and fade out segments.  The problem here is that interviewees are talking as these effects are used. So, audiences don’t necessarily get the full story from the interviewees.  The result of these editing issues is a presentation that could likely have a negative impact on viewer engagement.  Luckily though, it happens at various points rather than continuously.  So even if does cause some viewer engagement problems, that risk won’t be too great.  Keeping that in mind, the editing issues, while undeniable, are not enough of a problem that they will keep viewers from watching the documentary in whole.  Even with the editing problems in mind, the documentary is still worth at least one watch thanks to its story.  The story is complimented quite well by the bonus material included with its presentation.  That is especially the case with the story’s bonus deleted scenes.

The story at the center of Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made is an enjoyable story that any cinephile should see at least once.  That is because its story is the kind of thing that audiences see in the biggest dramatic blockbusters from Hollywood’s “Big Six” studios.  It is an underdog story that will move any viewer as the dreams of three men come true.  It shows that anyone can accomplish anything if they put their mind to it and really want it.  This comes through loud and clear even despite the issues raised in the program’s editing.  The jump cuts and dissolves do detract from the overall experience, but luckily not so much that they make the documentary unwatchable.  Keeping all of this in mind, this documentary is still well worth the watch whether one is a fan of Raiders of the Lost Ark or one is just a cinephile.  Even with everything noted, there is still at least one more element to note in the program’s presentation. That element is the program’s bonus material.  More specifically, the program’s bonus deleted scenes are of note.  The bonus deleted scenes barely top the half hour mark, pushing the documentary’s overall length to just over two hours.  They are, collectively, a prime example of the importance of deleted scenes to any presentation’s home release.  In the case of this program’s deleted scenes, audiences find out that not one but two young women played the part of Marion in Eric and Chris’ adaptation of Raiders of the Lost Ark.  Audiences also learn how the men – then boys – edited their movie and even get to see the letter that Steven Spielberg sent the men, inviting them to meet him along with much more.  The material that is presented in the deleted scenes adds so much more depth to the primary feature in this documentary.  It is clear in watching them that they were removed most likely for time.  Even with that in mind it is good to see that these scenes were included in the final product.  That is because of the value that they add to the doc’s story.  When that is considered along with the central feature and even the editing issues, the final product is one that, again, any cinephile should see at least once.

MVD Visual’s new documentary Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made is a documentary that any cinephile should see at least once.  That is due in part to the underdog story at the center of the program.  It is a story that proves dreams can and do come true.  It is just up to a person’s own drive to make those dreams become reality, as is shown here.  The editing issues that are evident throughout the program’s 93-minute run time cannot be ignored.  They are problematic to say the least.  But they are not, collectively, so problematic that they make the doc unwatchable.  The deleted scenes that are included as bonus material do plenty to make up for those editing issues and in turn do just as much as the story itself to make this doc worth the watch.  The commentary plays its own part in making the program worth the watch, too as does the fact that the story is presented both on separate DVD and Blu-ray.  All things considered, Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made proves in the end to be one more movie-centered documentary that any cinephile should see at least once.  It is available via MVD Entertainment Group’s online store at http://mvdb2b.com/s/RaidersBluRayDVD/MVD8448BR.  More information on this and other titles from MVD Visual is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://mvdvisual.com, http://www.mvdentertainment.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MVDEntertainmentGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mvdentgroup

 

 

 

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Paramount, Lucasfilm’s new Indiana Jones Box Set The Best Yet

Paramount Pictures/Lucasfilm, LTD.

Indiana Jones is one of the most famous and beloved heroes in the stories annals of Hollywood.  His original trio of adventures has transcended generations.  And his more recent adventure has its own legions of fans, too.  To this day, Indiana Jones costumes are still popular every Halloween.  And much like his costumes are so popular, so are his adventures to the point that they have seen multiple releases both as stand-alone features and box sets.  Now fans have the opportunity to see all four movies in a whole new way thanks to the release of the brand new “Indiana Jones:  The Complete Adventures” on blu-ray.

Paramount and Lucasfilm have officially released the complete four film set along with the bonus features included in the previous sets.  Among those bonus features are the “Making of” features for all four of the movies and the feature discussing the now famed “melting face” sequence from Indiana Jones and the Raiders Of The Lost Ark.  That in itself is a great feature for anyone who has any interest in Hollywood special effects and movie production.  Some of the features even include bonus pop up trivia that adds even more appreciation for these classic movies.  For instance, audiences learn through the pop-up trivia that when Indy comes face to face with a King Cobra in “Raiders”, he was never really in danger, of course.  He was actually separated from the snake by glass.  That the glass was made invisible in post production is a tribute to the work of all involved.  Another little tidbit is that the canyon scene in which the Nazis were carrying the ark was the same canyon from a certain other famous science fiction movie.  Give up?  Does the title Star Wars mean anything to anyone?  That’s right!  It’s the same one.  Obviously it’s a little more than mere coincidence.

The bonus features included in this set are much like the ones from the previous DVD releases.  But not everyone has had the opportunity to own this piece of movie history.  For those who have yet to include it in their home libraries, the bonus features make the whole viewing experience that much more enjoyable.  They are just a drop in the bucket, though.  The clarity of the picture in all four movies is so much clearer in each one.  Everything is more clear and defined.  Even the original grainy footage is still evident here and there.  Nothing has been lost in the transfer to blu-ray.  If anything, so much has been gained with this set.

The enhanced picture and the extensive bonus features go a long way to making this a must have set for Indiana Jones fans of any age.  They aren’t all that make it an impressive set.  Unlike the previous larger “Complete DVD Movie Collections”, this set is far more ergonomically designed.  It’s presented in a much more slim case shaped like a book.  Each “page” contains the disc for each movie.  Also included on each page is a promo poster and production shots to enhance the design.  This compact design will save space on anyone’s DVD and/or blu-ray rack.  And combined with everything else included in this set, most audiences will agree that “Indiana Jones:  The Complete Adventures” is not only the “complete” adventures of Indiana Jones, but the complete definitive adventures of Indiana Jones.

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