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

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

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
Unrated
runtime:
94 minutes
director:
Tim Skousen, Jeremy Coon
genre:
Documentary, Adventure, Biography

We gave it an A

There’s a fine line between being a movie fan and a movie fanatic. In 1982, that line was definitely crossed by three Mississippi kids who were so obsessed with Steven Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark that they decided to remake it shot-for-shot. They didn’t just love the film, they wanted to become one with it. What the baby-faced trio lacked in funding and resources, they more than made up for with the kind of DIY, ignorance-is-bliss passion that only the young or truly deranged possess, and their quest was as epic as Indy’s search for the Ark of the Covenant. It would consume the next seven years of their lives and ultimately leave their once inseparable friendship in pieces. Tim Skousen and Jeremy Coon’s new documentary, Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made, isn’t the kids’ finished film. It’s a film about the making of their film—and it’s amazing. Chris Strompolos, Eric Zala, and Jayson Lamb are all in their 40s now. Some have 9-to-5 careers and families, but none seems to have lost the fiery wide-eyed zeal that made them first pick up a bullwhip and a clunky video camera 34 years ago. The film ostensibly chronicles how they reunited as adults to film the one climactic Raiders action sequence they never got in the can as kids. But what it’s really about is three grown men tapping back in to the best time of their lives to feel some of that childlike Spielbergian magic again. A

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