Beyond Black Mesa, Fan Shortfilm
#1 Posted 21 January 2011 - 10:46 PM
Taken from the youtube description page:
Beyond Black Mesa is a short Independent fan film Inspired by the Half-Life Video Game series. This is an action packed short film centering around Adrian Shephard and a band of resistance fighters struggling to get out a warning about the impending invasion.
- Independent short film - 2 years in the making - Endless hours of post
- 1 Canon HV20
- 7 Friends
- $1,200 budget for the full short film.
This film is not HL,HL2 or Opposing Forces. It's a short fan film that takes place in the Half-Life world. Also, as a completely independent film, we wanted to have a creative voice in the movie and make it a movie that we would enjoy shooting. We took artistic freedoms and liberties, unfortunately most of those decisions were determined by our limited resources.
Check out: http://BEYONDBLACKMESA.COM
Directed by Brian Curtin
Producer: Matt Hall, Mat Powell
Actors/Grips: Joy Gravel, Walt Thomas, Andrew Gothard
Special Tracks: Nate Quarterman
Narrator: Taylor Robinson
Audio Mastering: Eric Chapman
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#3 Posted 21 January 2011 - 11:36 PM
I only have two slight niggles, one the aperture labs computer, although I guess it's in the realms of possibility they also made desktop computers as a sideline! The other is the fact that the zombies seem more L4D inspired than Half Life...but then I guess having all you zombies having headcrabs would make things even more difficult, so I'll let them off!
Overall I was very impressed.
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#5 Posted 22 January 2011 - 10:57 AM
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I am a Lie
#6 Posted 22 January 2011 - 02:01 PM
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#8 Posted 23 January 2011 - 10:34 PM
#9 Posted 23 January 2011 - 11:01 PM
Well apparently the other HL short movie that I linked in my post did it on a $500 budget.
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#10 Posted 23 January 2011 - 11:21 PM
$500 budget not including things they already owned. They already had all the camera and computer equipment to do the filming and special effects. I'm not trying to minimize their accomplishment, though. I really enjoyed part 1 of Escape from City 17, just as I really enjoyed Beyond Black Mesa. I do agree with you that Escape from City 17 did have more of a Half-Life feel and atmosphere.
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#11 Posted 23 January 2011 - 11:28 PM
That aside, I was pretty bored with Beyond Back Mesa, but that's mostly because I personally prefer my films light on action and my games light on heavy story.
Also, who cares who had a smaller budget? Is that some sort of e-penis measurement for indie films?
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#13 Posted 24 January 2011 - 03:16 AM
I was just saying that because I think Escape From City 17 used their budget to craft a more Half Life-esque film.
City 17 Civilian
#15 Posted 25 January 2011 - 06:37 AM
However, I'm also a diehard HL fan. If you can't afford to have headcrab zombies, then don't have them at all. It was WAY, WAY out of place and completely threw the movie off track. This is a short film, so restrict the bad guys to the combine.
I like kung fu. I like swords. But I don't want them in a movie set in a world devastated by aliens, especially if its in the style of Half-Life. This, too was completely out of place. Remember, Shepherd is a SOLDIER, not a black belt. And he used a ****ing wrench in OP, not a crowbar . Why couldn't the CP pull out that awesome baton. That would've been an excellent opportunity for cool FX, with all the electricity and whatnot.
Since this movie took two years to make, I assume at least some things must have gone wrong to delay its release. Nearly every sound heard in the game is either foley or directly from HL2 sound files. Did you have audio problems? Was there no access to an XLR mic? This would also explain the voiceover, as it would seem less obvious. It actually worked rather well, as the film was used to introduce HL2's world and all its nuances to audiences both familiar and unfamiliar with the game in a short time.
I know many people have complained about the ending, but did you REALLY have to kill off Shepherd? He, like Gordon, is like an ace G-Man's sleeve. He was saved so that one day he would serve some significant purpose. Seeing him die in such a cliche, "romantic" way was kind of disappointing.
I'm not saying you guys did a bad job. In fact, this was superbly made. It demonstrates that you don't need a massive budget to make a great, special effects heavy movie.
But there were some things that made me look at it in a negative light than a positive one. I hope you guys do well in the many festivals I'm sure you've already entered or are planning to enter.