It’s A Bit Good: Left 4 Dead – Impulse 76

By John Walker on December 22nd, 2011 at 11:02 am.

She's a bit young, isn't she?

Dear me, I wasn’t paying attention yesterday. Remember that we told you about the excellent trailer for a Left 4 Dead fan-made film, that to my eyes at least look Hollywood scale? The full 10 minute version is now there for you to see. And by “there”, I mean, “just below these words”. It really is remarkably good.

So I guess they didn’t know anyone who looked like Bill.

Okay, I admit, I wasn’t expecting it to go in that direction.

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100 Comments »

  1. JagRoss says:

    It could have been so good.

    • povu says:

      I still can’t believe they did that. The beginning was great, the characters looked and kinda sounded like the game characters, the atmosphere was good… Then they completely ruined it with… That.

      I hoped that it would be a quick whacky joke and that *he* would run off again, but it only got worse from that point onwards.

      I was excited when the teaser came out, now I feel sad. :/

    • rocketman71 says:

      Nice beginning, great production for a fan film.. until it degenerated into console fanboy wet dreams.

    • HexagonalBolts says:

      Master Chief… From Halo… In Left 4 Dead… was…….. are they trolling?

    • Premium User Badge Sarigs says:

      Aye was wondering what would happen at the 6 minute mark from everyone’s comments and…..ugggh.

      Complete agree with everyone else here, starts off brilliant, well judged, good mood and effects and then just descends into complete farce.

      Utter waste

    • Zelius says:

      I have to say, though, the production values were pretty damn good. If only they hadn’t wasted it.

    • spice_rack says:

      Here’s my issue… if they knew from the start that they were going to go that fanboy route, then they half-assed it.

      Go big or go home. There should have been a lot more characters, or at the very least, they should have given the characters more opportunities to show off what they can do.

    • gamma says:

      This is a utterly uncalled for Deus EX machination.

    • Premium User Badge Jackablade says:

      If they’d had JC Denton or Adam Jensen turn up too they could have at least made a good visual pun.

  2. lordcooper says:

    Watch out, Slenderman is right behind you.

  3. Memph says:

    Bill is deaded remember.

    Good stuff until 6 mins in…and then, well, what the fudge? is all i can say.

    • SquareWheel says:

      Bill… died?

    • Hoaxfish says:

      No, Bill just went to get some new armour, which obviously he can’t wear at the same time as his hat.

  4. Innovacious says:

    Yeah, friend showed me this yesterday.

    him: “remember when we were excited about this?”
    me: “why ‘were’? it seems ok to m- OH DEAR GOD WHAT HAVE THEY DONE”
    him: “a..”
    me: “NO”
    him: “i..”
    me: “NO”
    him: “but..”
    me: “NO”

  5. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    Can’t be viewed in germany, because.

    • StranaMente says:

      That’s better this way, trust me. You don’t want to see what they did.

    • Baka says:

      GEEEEEEEEEEMAAAAAAAA
      *falls on knees*

    • aserraric says:

      It’s dangerous to go alone. Take this: http://www.ibvpn.com
      It’s still an annoyance, since you don’t really want to be on VPN all the time, but at least you can see the stuff everyone else is talking about.

  6. Premium User Badge AndrewC says:

    I…oh…oh…

    OK, not for me, thanks.

  7. Branthog says:

    A bit good? You’re kididng, right? The only part that is any good is the trailer content, which conveyed something entirely different than the ridiculous actual thing they actually gave us. I remember people responding to the trailer with comments that it seemed like a high quality and mature take on the franchise that was really going to set a new bar. What we got was a nine minute video that – while shot well – looked like it was created by a twelve year old boy in 1992.

    • Persona says:

      Yeah, I’m wondering if Walker watched a different video. Because there’s nothing good about this ridiculous piece of shit.

      Whoever was responsible for this fan film would fit right into Kojima Productions.

    • MajorManiac says:

      I guess John meant some bits are good.

  8. Agricola says:

    If they just wanted to bring game characters to the screen they should have dropped the whole L4D premise and just make a film based on a fighting tournament….

    Oh dear.

  9. CMaster says:

    Lol wut.

    Well, I guess that sort of thing is to be expected of fan work, rather than original film.

  10. iaguz says:

    Huh?

  11. JayTee says:

    I was half expecting to see Mario headstop a zombie before exclaiming “It’sa me Mario!”

    That was awful :(

    • Shuck says:

      Only the head-stomping appearance of Mario could have saved that video…

    • Kostaja says:

      Weird thats excatly what I was thinking
      Left4cosplay.

  12. Premium User Badge RobF says:

    Aaaah, that was ace!

    Made this morning start with a smile.

    • max pain says:

      Agree, that was actually worth watching for a laugh, in contrast to other all serioused up fan-made films. Wonderful trolling, I want more of that.

    • DigitalSignalX says:

      Ya, I was fine with the insertion of humor. They even cut a black frame with the word “OWNED” in after killing the heavy.

    • moondog548 says:

      Hell yes. Expertly filmed troll/homage is VASTLY superior to expertly filmed aping played for pretention. :D

  13. Navagon says:

    Well I liked it anyway. It’s a bit of silly fun which these things should be, really.

  14. Greg Wild says:

    Laugh or cry? YOU DECIDE!

  15. Drake Sigar says:

    The script appears to have been written by an eight year old. And not in a good way.

  16. mondomau says:

    Masterful trolling.

    Or just really bad film making.

  17. Skusey says:

    Halfway through I was about to get annoyed that it seemed to be set after Bill’s death but somehow they didn’t realise what the Witch was, but that complaint seems a bit minor now. At least the trailer was good.

  18. RC-1290'Dreadnought' says:

    I don’t see why they bothered with all that buildup just to end like that.

  19. Waricck says:

    For those of you who couldn’t view the video, I’ll summarise it for you. It was all jolly L4D until suddenly Master Chief decided to make an appearance at 6:00.

  20. Red_Avatar says:

    Ah yes, why not introduce characters from grossly overrated console games (GoW & Halo) to ruin it all *facepalms*

  21. Gwynor says:

    They screwed everything up, but in a very professional way.

  22. MadTinkerer says:

    Hey, don’t forget the Xbox L4D fans outnumber the PC ones. Once I was over the shock of “Master Chief? Really!?!“, I got into it. The main disappointment is that at the end of the climax they didn’t have any dialogue explaining whether it was a dream sequence or a cross-dimensional thing or if the other characters were actually just cosplaying Survivors in the L4D universe or what.

    Also, it would have been more appropriate for Gordon Freeman and/or other Valve characters, or at least characters from other modern zombie survival games to be the surprise twist.

    But it was an interesting attempt despite the vagueness.

    • Anders Wrist says:

      No possible explanation could have saved it at that point.

    • Matt says:

      Camera zooms out and reveals it’s all taking place inside an Xbox 360

  23. I_have_no_nose_but_I_must_sneeze says:

    That’s what happens when you let gamers make movies. I’m surprised there were no Aliens or Predators in sight.

  24. ntw says:

    What
    the
    FUCK?

  25. mbp says:

    Another vote for shoot the scriptwriter for the stupid ending.

    Apart from that though the film making is superb.

  26. Anders Wrist says:

    Yeah.. No.

  27. LuNatic says:

    Disappointed not to see a TF2 spy wearing a troll-face mask.

  28. Premium User Badge Oozo says:

    And where is Michael? To Michael!

  29. Burglar says:

    Very successfully subverted viewers expectations I think!

    I thought it was a good laugh and well made short. The filmmakers’ lack of taste in games doesn’t detract from that.

    Definitely interesting the way it shifted gears half way through, and I think people are being a bit closed minded to experimentation here.

    Watching the ‘making of’ however I always have little sympathy for people who describe their productions as “extremely low budget”, when they must be close to using a hundred thousand dollars worth, if not more, of camera equipment, even if it’s technically true.

  30. Premium User Badge yhancik says:

    With a title like that, what I expected was a surprise appearance of Groove Champion and Taurus

    • greenbananas says:

      Exactly. It wouldn’t necessarily have saved the movie but at least it’d a given it a good goddamn soundtrack.

  31. applecup says:

    What the hell did I just watch.

    A++ trolling, I guess?

    eta: Thinking about it, wasn’t Impulse 76 the HL1 cheat to add allies? So, uh. That might explain a little?

    • Davee says:

      I think you may be right and it would surely explain a lot.

      But why would allies be from console games (HL1 being foremost a PC release) and not even a single Valve-game character other than the thee to start with? Unless… They still be trollin’!

  32. zeroskill says:

    This was a bit good until that weird guy in the metal suit showed up.

  33. Wisher says:

    I, uhm… What the HECK!?

    It seems like the director was going the right way but then he took an arrow to the knee…

  34. Flappybat says:

    Halfway through they remembered there is a universal law that all fan films must be bad.

  35. Stupoider says:

    The biggest problem was that the Infected aren’t supposed to eat flesh- I think that tells you a lot about me.

  36. BrendanJB says:

    Production, characters and costumes were all brilliant, I’ll give them that.

    But yeah, after 6 minutes it goes full retard.

  37. Avaenuha says:

    Ugh. They broke their own rules, and they didn’t even do it properly.

    You set up the rules of your story so the audience know what the stakes are – if the audience doesn’t know where the limits are (ie, Lewis can’t call down an airstrike, Zoey doesn’t have magical powers) they can’t invest in the story or characters and there’s no tension because anything could happen to get the characters out of the jam. This is film making 101 – establish the boundaries.

    They were doing so well with the tension, and they did one little rule-break with MC, which they could have pulled off if he’d disappeared as a hilarious “what the?” moment. But then loading in all the other characters without letting the ‘world’ compensate with tougher baddies means all bets are off. No tension, no more characterisation (notice how L, Z and F barely even react to the newcomers?) it’s just a mess of stuff happening. There’s no danger to characters anymore, so it loses all the drama, tension and point of the first half of the movie. I’ve nothing against the concept of “set it up as big serious l4d thing and then whack in all these characters out of nowhere” – they just executed it poorly.

    If they wanted to troll by bringing in those characters, they should have balanced it by bringing in some badass enemy from other franchises as well – keep the tension going, make the ‘anything goes’ go both ways so the audience still cares – make it a big, dramatic finale where there’s real danger and stakes. Otherwise your audience just sits there going “uh, okay, now it’s just stupid. I’m bored now.”

    • Stupoider says:

      Haha, fan-film critics are hilarious.

      Are we really trying to make sense of this flick?

    • theleif says:

      Well, he is right. If the build up where on both sides, it would (in a weird way) have made sense.

  38. HilariousCow says:

    “Hey, we’re filming a left 4 dead fan movie, and we need another actor… could you play bill?”

    “HAHAHA NO BILL IS AN OLD MAN LOL WHY WOULD I WANT TO BE AN OLD FART”

    “Ah, well… I guess you could be a zombie?”

    “NO I WANT TO BE THE HERO”

    “Err… okay, but, you do understand what we’re trying to do here?”

    “MY FRIEND DANNY CAN BE IN IT TOO YEAH?”

    FFFfffffuuuuuuuuuuuuu

  39. skyturnedred says:

    I would’ve accepted someone from Resident Evil or another zombie game to make an appearance. But this is just stupid. And not in the haha-silly kinda way.

    At least we still got Nuka Break.

    • Premium User Badge Jackablade says:

      Ok the -real- ending (ie the one in my imagination) is as follows.

      Lewis is being mauled by the Witch. Zoey and Francis are distracted be oncoming infected. Lewis reaches for his gun but it’s too far away. Suddenly there’s a flash of light. The Witch looks up and growls – Witches don’t like bright light. She’s struck in the head with a baseball bat with nails hammered through it by an off screen assailant, killing her. Cut to Lewis’s perspective. We get a worms eye perspective of a pair of blood spattered boat shoes, tilting up to reveal a man with an SLR camera hanging around his neck. It’s Frank West.
      *insert pithy dialogue here*
      Lewis is too badly injured to walk so Frank picks him up and carrys him, ALA Dead Rising, taking a moment to get an upskirt photo of the witch. The four of them battle their way to the safe room.
      *more talky-ness here*
      Frank leaves the three Survivors, heading off into the city, taking photos as he goes. You can see the flashes of the camera reflecting off the architecture for a while after he’s gone from screen.

      And end.

      So there we go. Possibly terrible, but I think -less- terrible.

      He helps Lewis to his feet then takes an upskirt picture of the Witch. You can see the flashes of his camera for a while after he’s gone.

  40. deadly.by.design says:

    NO! After watching this, I refuse to like it.

  41. Leg O'Brick says:

    I was digging the master chief nod. But them they took it WAAAAAAAAY too far. Ruined a very well filmed short film.

  42. mire says:

    So… troll? I was getting worried when they apparently experienced collective amnesia on the subject of Witches, but then… oh god… what the hell. I’m surprised Rick Astley didn’t make an appearance.

  43. wodin says:

    I enjoyed it. Thought the twist was good to be honest.

    A film about game, don’t see the problem.

  44. Roshin says:

    No, just no.

    It was quite good until Master Chief appeared. Then it was downhill with a bullet in the back. Technically it was okay, although the special infected (apart from the witch) looked like arse. What the hell were they thinking?

  45. menderslan says:

    Just got so trolled.

    It was so good up until THAT part.

    Also, shouldn’t they all be terribly familiar with witches by this point? Why were they all “HURR DURR IT’S OK SWEETIE WE WON’T HURT YOU”?

  46. MajorManiac says:

    Yeah, the part with the Witch was a bit annoying as they should have known better, but I quite liked it as a whole.

    I think it could have been improved with the inclusion of Mario and a menagerie of bads, not just heroes.

  47. seruko says:

    should have ended in a rick roll if they were gonna go that route.

  48. Davie says:

    The weirdest thing about this is that I swear to god I saw an earlier trailer for this that was nothing but Bill getting ready to go out and shoot shit. It was very similar in tone to the pre-title sequence in this bizarre thing.

    So unless there’s another excellent-looking L4D fan film in the works, they actually did find someone to play Bill, and then opted to kill him off before he ever actually showed up and replace him with every preteen boy’s power fantasies.

  49. mpk says:

    …the fuck?