Dragon Ball and Anime fans alike, is this an answer to our prayers? Since the release of Dragon Ball Evolution in 2009, many fans (including myself) have been trying to find a way to wash the foul taste it left behind. It seemed that for a long time, the adaptation of our favorite Anime/Cartoons into film has always largely disappointed audiences worldwide. However, there is a glimmer of hope on the horizon, and we found that with this recent fan film done by Black Smoke Films. Dragon Ball Z: Fall of Men covers the story of Trunks, the last remaining Z Fighter and their struggle against the seemingly, unbeatable Cell. Fans of the series will know this plot line from the official Anime movie of Dragon Ball Z: The History of Trunks. So, just how good is this fan film? Well, I’m both hopeful and critical of the Fan Film. I won’t spoil too much of the short film, but it wasn’t the perfect movie for Dragon Ball Z fans. One can argue that there is no such ‘perfect’ movie and I do understand that, however if we take the example of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s not perfect and there are many things which we would like to change, however, it is suffice, it doesn’t have all fans raging that it was such a bad movie, unlike say, The Last Airbender and Dragon Ball Evolution. It seemed like a step towards something that can truly be great, however Dragon Ball Z: Fall of Men isn’t the end all, be all films to quench our thirst for a grand movie that is ‘worthy’ to emulate the series.
As a fan, my thoughts are that that was a great attempt with the budget which they had. Black Smoke Films deserve to be commended for the effort, skill and time that they put to that movie short. It gave the feel for a movie, and not just some random fan film on Youtube. There was a fantastic use of the soundtrack and the effects, with the budget that they had, was wonderful. As a fan film, that we outstanding effort. However, as a critic, I have a slightly varied thoughts. As a critic, the first thing I would say, is that if you’re hoping for the movie that Dragon Ball Evolution wasn’t, Dragon Ball Z: Fall of Men is not it. As an audience, we need to keep in mind that this is a fan film and there will be discrepancies and things that will be imperfect. As great example of this would be how Cell looked. He had the body of Perfect Cell, yet the face of Imperfect Cell. Another instance would be when they clash energy beams, I wasn’t sure whether the beams caused an explosion which then caused Trunks to revert back to normal, or he was hit. There were also times when the added effects looked a bit too ‘cartoonish’ and didn’t look like it belonged in the scene. Another discrepancy is the lack of Gohan in the short. Gohan was a key person in Future Trunks’ development. However Black Smoke Films explain that they changed the story slightly to focus more on family ties than on the relationship between with Gohan and Trunks, and that seems to work out well, but without that prior knowledge, it would be a bit confusing for some of the fandom expecting to see Gohan.
The biggest thing to consider is that it is a fan film. Will this mean there is hope for better film adaptations of Anime, or will we have to wait much longer? Personally it’s a glimmer of hope, but it’s still a bit too early to get say that the dry streak is over. Make sure to check out the fan film below and also let us know your opinion in the comments as well. This is your boy, NicoNicoEldries, signing out.
Link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HM20wwzl4Ds
Featured Image: Screenshot of Cell in Dragon Ball Z: Fall of Men – Black Smoke Films