I can't remember a time when I wasn't excited for Left 4 Dead - The Movie to come true. Since 2010, a group of fans had the idea of making a short promo video based on Valve's popular video game.
The positive response from the public at the time allowed the project to grow into a 45-minute short-film, as they had found a screenwriter that challenged them to create something even bigger with his help.
Production went on for almost three years, due to complications during the creation of the project. Both cast and crew were on a voluntary regime, creating logistical issues, along with internal issues and job opportunities that made it difficult to shoot the film at a coherent pace. At one point 3 of the 4 actors chosen in the beginning of the project left, as they were moving to other countries. But then in 2014, with the help of several crowdfunding campaigns and a whole lot of soul, they were able to complete the shooting stage of the film, releasing a trailer in March 2015.
By then hype was at an all time high, as 500,000 people were anxious to see the final product come to life. The project was still very popular due to the game's online multiplayer mode, its numerous parodies created by Valve's animation program Garry's Mod, and the sad fact of Hollywood not giving a damn about this IP. This Italian crew, lead by Daniele Bellucci, gave everything they had and on the 10th of September of 2016 the movie was publicly unveiled.
"Shot With Strong Passion and Tenacity" is the opening line that's shown on screen right as we start this adventure. Rightly so, considering everything that has been done for this to see the light of day. We're presented with a film that looks like something we'd be watching on the SyFy Channel. Mind you, there is no place for cheesy special effects and a plot designed solely for entertainment. Left4Dead is here to keep you at the edge of your seat.
One of its most noticeable traits is that the film was dubbed in English. Some comments on YouTube point it under a negative light, but I actually feel that it adds something to the film, reminding me of those old dubbed Asian martial arts films on VHS.
The faithfulness of the source material is also present here, its characters and its monsters (like The Tank, which appears in full CGI glory, and The Witch) making a stunning appearance that still makes my spine shiver just thinking about it. Technically, its brilliant camera work and direction easily puts to shame some of Hollywood's bigger budget productions. When it comes to talent and wit, this one has got it all in the right place.
I really hope further down the line this project gets some kind of continuation, be it in a mini-series or another movie. As long as conditions are able to meet the quality of this first movie, I'm sure the ever growing community of fans of the production company created by the makers of this amazing project, Mexican Standoff, will hopefully sooner or later produce a sequel of sorts.
Until then, enjoy this amazing fanfilm, made with more blood, sweat and tears than anything you've ever seen.