Four Short Film Series – Is this series just bait or actually any good?

Four is a short film series on Youtube by the channel Walk with Short Film I’ve noticed that Season 2 is getting a lot of promotion on social media, so I decided to see what the hype was all about, as the latest episode was coming out today.

I am going to watch each episode from series one to current then give my overall thoughts so far.

Season 1

I will be keeping the storyline and spoilers as vague as possible, so you can watch it for yourself.

As I hadn’t seen any of the series I had to start from Season 1 part 1. I tried watching the trailer…twice…I couldn’t get passed the acting and the fact that the sound levels were off. But I had to remind myself that this was an independent production, and that the actual episode would be a lot better.

Storyline

The overall storyline of the first two episodes was cute, it was clear which characters were good or bad and that the four main characters would have a good opportunity for character development.

I like how the four friends had solid friendship, it really helped with the progression of the storyline as the characters all slowly began to react differently to their situation…For-shadowing that they will eventually have a disagreement but at the end of the day have each others backs.

After the third episode the storyline got a bit messy, as I am both typing and watching it got confusing very quickly, but that part is on me. I felt as though there wasn’t much opportunity to get to know the two gang members ‘Smooth‘ and ‘Kid‘. With a short film of this storyline it would have been stronger if these characters were more developed so that way viewers could properly chose who they like better

Considering that the four kids were so loyal to “KI” in the first episode, it seems a bit unrealistic just how fast their loyalties changed because of a situation that they brought onto themselves.

I was however impressed by the fact that you gave an opportunity for the viewers to chose between to alternative endings. After watching both I decided that I preferred “Smooths Ending” as it showed that there was a lesson to be learnt…Stay in your lane and don’t get involved.

Cinematography

As a positive, you could tell that it was produced by people who know how to film, with a larger budget it could have been really professional.

A weakness

Although the establishing shots done with the drone in the very first episode looked good, they didn’t work well which I assume is why I didn’t see that style again.

In terms of the soundtracks during confrontational scenes the editors should use it as an opportunity to edit along side of it; such as cutting the shots to the main beats from time. Although the style of music complemented what was going on, it didn’t feel part of the scene.

Acting

There was a big improvement for most of the characters as the series progressed, however the side characters always seemed to get into their characters the most, such as Keisha and Smooth.

Although this was meant to be a serious short film series I found it funny throughout the whole series, especially the gun shot reactions….Seriously what even were those!

Gun Reaction – Episode 1

A small weakness

However the Sharianie’s character (Sorry girl) did not improve. No hate but it just goes to show that these days, looks override talent both on stage and behind the camera. I hope as the media industry progresses production companies try harder to find actresses that are both pretty and talented.

Season 1 Episode 3

Sorry but if an unstable person just shot someone out of panic, you would NOT take the gun from them like that…Lets move on

Script

The script team did a good job to get through the bad acting…Okay I’ll stop getting onto the acting now. To continue the script was actually well made, the characters seemed honest and real. The dialogue told the story well keeping the characters true to themselves, I particularly likes how the characters discussed there plans, although common slang was used, you could authenticate each character by their own way of communicating,

Rating

So far I give the series a 5/10. The score could be higher through better use of sound and acting.


Season 2

Storyline

As the episode began I was glad to see that the characters had drifted apart, as it was only realistic giving their age and what had happened. It was sad to see that Devonte was falling into the gang life, but I really like how it is not yet clear which season ending that Walk With have chosen to go with, this artistic choice has really worked very well for Devonte’s character development. We know that Devonte has made a bad decision, but we just can’t tell what; leaving us viewers wanting to know more.

OOOP back with those lovely establishing shot…

It was a good story progression that Sharianie has found a female friend, as I feel that it was a lacking point for her character. Just like season one the loyalties or even fake loyalties between the friends strong.

In this episode we really explore in Shariane’s character and look at how she finds herself falling back the lifestyle she left for uni to avoid. We are only one episode in but I have faith that this series can really progress into something strong.

Acting and Script

The use of extras did a lot for this show, especially with Shariane’s situation it helped viewers to really empathise with her. The reactions to her viral video seemed true and realistic of the cultural around viral videos.

Season 2 Episode 1

Rating

This episode alone is an improvement, I now give the series a 7/10 due to character development and the use of speaking extras.

To Answer the Question

Is the series getting views because it is bait or is it actually really good?

A lot of the views is definitely due to the reputation of the crew and cast, however I can tell that it has remained a popular series to watch because it was overall well made. Although the series has it’s noticeable weaknesses, but it is an independent production that has made great use of it’s budget and the locations that the production team had access to.

In conclusion, I am going to go with both answers, yes it has views because of it’s reputation. But it has regular viewers because of the professionally executed content.

Well done Walk with Team…You just may well here from me again.

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