When you think of live-action Transformers films, you probably think of the Michael Bay-directed blockbusters. Some people love the movies, some people hate them, but pretty much everyone agrees that the characters in the modern Transformers films usually don't bear too strong a resemblance to their cartoon counterparts.
If you'd prefer a live-action Transformers film that's much closer to the original cartoons, though, you're in luck. A cosplay group called Arizona Autobots has created a 13-minute live-action fan film that not only captures much of the look of the original cartoons but tries to emulate much of their overall style as well.
Directed by Lior Molcho (who's perhaps best known as the video director for Sia's song "Alive"), Generation 1 features the most popular Transformers from the original cartoon in costumes made from EVA foam. Miniatures and other practical effects are used for most of the film, though some digital effects such as laser blasts and mouth animations are also added. The end result looks a bit cheesy at times, but that seems to be largely by design. The film was clearly a labor of love, especially when you think about how hot those costumes must have been given that much of the fan film was shot in the Arizona desert.
Though there are a few modern jokes tossed in here and there, Generation 1's creators definitely wanted to tie it in with the original cartoon series as much as possible. Sound effects from the cartoons can be heard throughout, and the cuts between scenes use the classic Autobot/Decepticon symbols that marked cuts in the original cartoon. Several character catchphrases can also be heard, and much of the banter holds up pretty well as a throwback to various characters as well.
There are a few jokes that seem to miss in the film, and a few effects that don't quite deliver. There are a few costumes that seem to be missing a little something, or that might have needed an extra little buff with a sander. And there's a few spots where the audio's a bit rough, or the voices come across a little shrill. But none of that really matters. Generation 1 isn't about making a Hollywood-quality film, or trying to compete with Bay's blockbusters for the hearts of the fans. It's about fans of the franchise celebrating why they fell in love with the characters in the first place, and working together to create something they can share with others.
Some might not like it; others might look at it and imagine what a film like this would be like if Hasbro had gone for the classic character look instead of the reimagined versions featured in Bay's films. Either way, the film stands as something the fanbase will hopefully enjoy.
Transformers: The Last Knight opens in U.S. theaters on June 23, 2017, followed by the Bumblebee spin-off on June 8, 2018, and Transformers 6 on June 28, 2019.
Source: YouTube (via: ComicBook.com)