Review of 'Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made'

raiders.jpg “Raiders!” tells the story of two school friends Eric and Chris who, having seen “Raiders of the Lost Ark” decided, at the age of 11, to recreate the film, shot for shot, in their home despite having only ever seen the film once. They immediately drafted a storyboard from memory then for seven years they spent all of their spare time faithfully recreating each and every scene…with the exception of the final spectacular sequence involving a Nazi plane. 20 years later they make the decision to secure funding and complete their labour of love, despite the lack of money and support from their employers.

This film goes cuts between telling the history of the film and the problems they face today attempting to complete the final sequence. Their challenges were always significant: In the beginning they filmed for quite some time before realizing that there was an “A” in the top left corner of the footage so they had to go back and re-shoot it all, the filming of a fire scene in a bar got dangerously out of hand not once but twice, when Chris had his head put into a plaster to form a mould they used the wrong type of plaster and things got VERY hot and ended up costing him his eyebrows, Chris being threatened with termination when his obsession with completing this final scene requires him to ask for two more days off of work…Before the days of the Internet, the fan film they made went viral, the tape copied again and again developing a cult following. After 35 years, in 2015, their labour of love is about to be completed.

A really lighthearted, entertaining and interesting look into two ordinary guys who decided to do an extraordinary thing, causing them to amass a huge supportive fan base. “Raiders!” initially pokes a lot of fun at the whole thing but when things start to take a turn for the worse as the pressure mounts it becomes much more as we see their obsession…and obsession that will change their lives forever.

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2020-08-10

Directed by: Jeremy Coon and Tim Skousen

Studio: Jeremy Coon Productions

Year: 2015

Length: 106 minutes

Genre: Documentary