There is a very fine line between making fun of superhero fandom and having fun with superhero fandom. One gives you flashbacks of hiding in the back of the classroom, avoiding the glares of your classmates. The other, well, it does the same thing, but you’ve got one hell of a grin on your face. The talented pool of artists within the Alter Egos Society provide the later with their short film, Archives of the Fantastic – The Ninth Cosmic Convergence.
Portland’s first (and so far, only) 100% homegrown superhero movie, Archives of the Fantastic is tongue-in-cheek love letter to a seemingly bygone era of heroics. The plot is simple. Portland, like many major cities, plays host to heroes and villains. The villains to bad things (but never too bad) and the heroes save the day (yes, always in the nick of time). However, as the title suggests, something terrible and Earth shattering forces the heroes and villains of Portland to band together and save the world! As simple as this plot sounds, there is a definite refreshing quality to the story. A little nostalgia trip to a time when characters weren’t eviscerated or violated every other issue. When a slice of naivete was welcome in your tale.
Still, it isn’t the plot that drives Archives of the Fantastic. It is the people behind it. The actors that make these non-Hollywood heroes and villains come to life. It is the creative heart of filmmakers Benja Barker, Steven Schmucker, and Daniel Miller that make the movie come to life. Archives of the Fantastic has that certain “something” you hear people talk about. Everyone involved has a passion in bringing this short to life and it shows on every frame. That alone would make Archives of the Fantastic a worthy addition to any movie collection, but the Alter Egos Society – in a rather heroic turn – have decided to donate all the profits from the film the p:ear. A Portland based non-profit, p:ear aids homeless and transitional youth through education, the arts, and positive recreation.
You can find your copy of Archives of the Fantastic: The Ninth Cosmic Convergence DVD in most Portland comic book stores and online. Rush out now, lest The Devourer take a bite out of The City of Roses!