Comic-Con: Episode IV - A Fan's Hope - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Comic-Con: Episode IV - A Fan's Hope Reviews

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Super Reviewer
August 1, 2012
Comic-Con is like the Holy Grail for all of us geeks. I've never been, but I really would LOVE to go one year, but until then I have this. "Comic-Con:Episode IV-A fan's Hope" is a documentary following a few people on their comic con experience, and also a look at the convention itself. Many directors/actors/generally famous people talk about their experiences with "the con". Robert Kirkman has a great line saying he "once tried to follow George Romero into the bathroom"(Kirkman created Walking Dead, Romero is the godfather of zombies for all you non-geeks). Morgan Spurlock directs, and continues his streak as the best documentary filmmaker out there right now. This ranks right up there with "Super Size Me", "30 Days", and "greatest movie ever sold". He has a knack for bring you on a good emotional roller coaster. You'll feel bad for the comic book resellers who find it harder and harder to sell comic books at a comic book convention. You'll laugh, and heck you may even cry at one of the sweetest proposals ever. If your a geek, then this is an absolute must see! If your not a geek, then just stick to being lame.
axadntpron
Super Reviewer
July 25, 2012
Not a big fan of Mr. Spurlock, but this was his most digestible film. (Get it? Because his first movie was Super Size Me.) The reason for this was because Spurlock does not make a single appearance in it. That's right. He actually attempts to tell a story here and not just chronicle another zany adventure in his otherwise uninteresting life.
All I desired from this movie was to be a fly on the wall for one of America's most loved conventions. Happily, that is what I got. He even follows the plight of a few aspiring artists as they prepare for the annual event.
Unfortunately, the personal stories are overshadowed by a smorgasbord of B-list celebrities gushing over this sacred gathering. While I admit it is fun to see how many celebrities Spurlock cajoled into appearing in the film, it robs the film of cohesion. It is a step in the right direction for Spurlock, but one that still needs a little fine tuning.
Super Reviewer
April 5, 2012
Ok...Now I really wanna go to Comic-Con!
Super Reviewer
April 2, 2012
As a three year attendee of this prestigious pilgrimage in addition to being a devoted fan of Morgan Spurlock's work, this film struck a very heartfelt chord with me. It's a hugely entertaining love letter to the fanboys across the world, and also carries a lot of relate humanity on how unified the event is. A must-see watch for all the nerds, and if you've always wanted to see what Morgan Spurlock can do when he makes a film in which he's never in front of the camera.
Super Reviewer
July 6, 2012
A nice look at the cultural phenomenon, but I expected Spurlock to delve deeper into the subject. It was obvious that there were almost no women amongst the celebrity/veteran con attendees who were interviewed. It is interesting that the Comic-Con is hardly about comics anymore, but has been taken over by other media. This doc is best when it focuses on the stories of seven con attendees though. One young man, whose story doesn't take as long to tell, is an action figure collector. There are two comic book illustrators from different backgrounds hoping to get jobs with publishers. There is a story of geek love with a young couple, who previously met at comic-con, and the guy's effort to propose to his girlfriend there. There is an old-timer comics dealer who struggles with the fact that comic sales are way down. However, I was most intrigued by the activities of Holly, a costume designer and builder. She built a seriously cool animatronic head for her one friend's costume and showed the real talent that can emerge from this world of video game, movies and comic fans.
Super Reviewer
August 28, 2013
Documentary on geek culture that doesn't go too deep - which is both a good and a bad thing.
June 9, 2014
It was ok. Pretty standard fair for geek docs- some interesting moments, some not-so interesting moments. The best being the story on how much comic con has changed from a comic book convention and into a mass market media machine for large entertainment companies.
July 23, 2012
Comic-Con: Episode IV pretty perfectly expressed the love fans have for comic con, the joy that comics and other media bring us, and the sense of home there, surrounded by thousands of other people who understand and embrace being a geek.
½ December 6, 2012
I don't think the people that made this movie would appreciate me very much. Because if I went to comic con it would be more about the movies, tv shows and actors and not about the artists and the comic book collectables. But I did really enjoy watching this movie. I was excited and nervous for the participants. And loved hearing everyones passion for the genre. I especially liked when now famous directors and actors were commenting on how they grew as nerds going to comic-con when it wasn't popular, and knowing now they are a huge part of it. It is inspiring.
September 17, 2012
You don't have to love comic books to love this film, it's about the geeky dreamer in us all. Shows us four individual's experiences at Comic-Con; the owner of the largest comic book store in the U.S., two comic book illustrators looking for a shot, and a beautiful costume maker looking to make a splash. Filmed a few years back, I was actually at the Kevin Smith panel shown (in the way way back, lol. Had to wait a few hours to get in.).
July 10, 2012
COMIC-CON: EPISODE IV- A FAN'S HOPE is as much an ode to the people of Comic-Con as it is the worlds and characters these individuals most strongly believe in and grew up with. Filmed during 2010's Comic Con in San Diego, A FAN'S HOPE thrives off of the fan's thrilling vibes of excitement and also the infectious enthusiasm and acceptance that many of the geek mecca-goers will appreciate to learn of or to be reminded of.

Every person in Morgan Spurlock's newest documentary, with it being his most restrained and straight-forward to date, has a fascinating story to tell. In addition, appearances from fan favorites and admitted geeks themselves Stan Lee, Joss Whedon, Kevin Smith, Eli Roth, Guillermo Del Toro, Seth Rogen, Seth Green, etc. all make welcome and warm statements sprinkled throughout this loving documentary.

In A FAN'S HOPE, there are eight individuals who come to Comic-Con for various purposes. Some are successful in their endeavors, others find a lesser amount of it but still strive on. There is the Survivor, the Soldier, the Costume Designer, the Lovers, and four additional individuals as well. From the comic book vendor of Mile High Comics (the Survivor) hoping to sell his most treasured, lock-sealed comic and turn a good profit in a market now dominated by popular mediums other than comics, to a soldier (of course the Soldier) from a small town who dreams of drawing comics for Marvel; and a costume designer (self-explanatory) who designs costumes with her friends and hopes to get a big break in the film/promotion costume designer scene. In short, these people are as relatable as they are honest in their camera confessions and what events and acts they take part in in 2010's Comic-Con.

Morgan Spurlock is firmly behind the camera the entire time, having only chronicled the events of the aforementioned eight individuals and directing his camera-men. He also released a stand-alone book with the same title that is a exciting photo journal of 2010's Comic-Con (at least for me). The camera-men knew how to tell the stories of these individuals, mainly by keeping the camera focused on them and the few key players in their geek-centric journeys.

A FAN'S HOPE is, by all means, a calling card for geeks of the newest generation to attend and geek out if we get the chance to at next year's Comic-Con, or any year for that matter. This documentary is also a reminder/affirmation to long-time geeks and attenders of Comic-Con that the geek mecca they have admired and loved over the years has received as much admiration and love from the filmmakers of this project that the widely-revered event it covers deserves. Us geeks feel it, and that's all that matters.
½ June 17, 2012
I loved this movie. Great look at the culture, the collectors, the dreamers and hardcore fans. Lots of passion for this "must" destination for all fans of comics, movies, video games and everything geek to nerds without being afraid to fly your geek flag high! A destination I must get to!!!!
April 28, 2012
In my opinion this is Spurlock's best documentary. He finds interesting characters to follow. We get an inside look of not only the people of Comic Con but also the event itself and how movies have really taken over the event. Truthfully there is not a plot line like in super size me, or the greatest movie ever sold. Rather this is a look into an event that for people is the only place they feel normal. And this movie shows us that its ok to be different because there are more people out there like you than you think...you just have to find them. This movie actually is directed very well too. The cuts between scenes using the comic strips was a great transition and the artist deserves a lot of credit. Rent this movie immediately.
April 20, 2012
A great film for it's target audience, Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope will really resonate with nerds, geeks, and pop-culture enthusiasts. But this film does little for people outside of this demographic, and does little to try to interest them. Even with some seemingly unnecessary scenes and other small problems, this film is still decent. Basically, if the word "Comic-Con" excites you, this movie is probably for you.
April 10, 2012
The great thing about Morgan Spurlock's latest documentary, Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope, is that you don't have to be some comic book fanboy with stacks of funnybooks up to your eyeballs(like yours truly) to get it. Spurlock, the innovative and fun loving documentary film maker behind investigative pieces like Super Size Me and The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, isn't trying to expose much of anything here. He just seems content to revel in the geeky pop culture goodness, and that's why this is undoubtedly his most fulfilling film to date.

That's not to say this is Spurlock's most insightful work, because clearly it isn't. At it's core, this is a celebration of all that the San Diego Comic-Con stands as now, and that is the holy Mecca for lovers of...well, anything pop culture related. Comic books, anime, role playing, you name it and it's there. But the event has also come to be a place of opportunity for many others, and besides highlighting the adults who walk around dressed up like Darth Maul or Sailor Moon, the main focus is on a handful of people who are relying on Comic-Con to change their lives.

There's the two wannabe comic books artists looking to impress an editor and hopefully get a job at a major publishing company. The harsh reality of the comic book industry is that maybe 1% of all art submissions gets approved and lead to careers, and Spurlock, who usually takes a tongue in cheek approach to even the most serious subjects, doesn't flinch away from the truth. The film also shows us a young, nerdy(we nerds can call one another that) couple attending the event, with the guy planning to pop the big question at a Kevin Smith Q&A. And then there's Holly, a remarkable costume designer who hopes to impress at the annual masquerade event with a dramatic re-creation of the Mass Effect video game.

By far the most intriguing story of all is that of Chuck, a veteran of the comic book retailer wars. As owner of Mile High Comics, the largest online retailer for comics, he counts on Comic-Con to get him through the year and turn a profit. While the bulk of the film is basically one big nerdgasm, Chuck's story presents the simple truth of the comic book industry and it's relation to San Diego Comic-Con, and that's that the industry is dying and those who run the event don't seem to notice or care. Comic-Con has become about much more than comic books now, and as the seller booth dwindles and fewer people show up, more and more retailers like Chuck are falling by the wayside.

For those who have watched Comic-Con grow basically at the expense of the comic book industry, Chuck's storyline may be a bit of a downer, but you'll instantly feel better when icons like Kevin Smith, Eli Roth, and Joss Whedon start sharing the crazy experiences they've had that can only happen at a place like Comic-Con. Smith, in particular, seems especially in tune with what makes the attendees tick, for they make up a sizable portion of his fan base. Oh, and of course there's Stan Lee, the unquestioned king of all things Marvel Comics, looking spry and boisterous as ever.

Unlike Spurlock's other movies, he keeps himself out of the camera, choosing to simply be an observer and not a participant. Plenty of other directors, some very high profile documentary film makers, would have tried to become the focus in some way and been totally out of place in that environment. If anything, this proves Spurlock's growth that he knows when to back away, and let the guys in the Stormtrooper outfits run the show.
½ April 9, 2012
This movie about San Diego comic con was perfect. I could really relate to it even though I go to nycc instead.
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