Directed by Oscar Nobi
Starring Dave MacRae, Catherine Rowney & Scarlett Clifford
Short film review by Monica Jowett
A Saturday afternoon soiree with friends finds some of them accidentally opening up about one another’s creative businesses, but honesty between friends might not always be the best course of action, as Oscar Nobi’s short film Liars discovers.
Filmed in one single take the camera acts as the fourth person in the conversation, panning between the characters as they talk to one another, and conversations are still happening off screen. It is only discovered that Bailey (Dave MacRae) is not alone after he finishes his outburst and turns around, the camera follows his line of sight to reveal the rest of the party. From this moment the story unfolds.
Bailey awakes on a rooftop to answer a call, yelling into the phone about a friend Frances’ (Catherine Rowney) terrible business idea that hasn’t gone anywhere. Unaware that he is not alone, he turns to find that it is not the morning after, but he is still at the party surrounded by friends, including Frances. Everyone looks offended and moves to leave, as Bailey woefully calls after Frances to try to explain. Aubrey (Scarlett Clifford) stays seated; berating him at his callousness and calls Bailey out about his own failed work. The situation takes a turn as Frances returns to eat some of Aubrey’s not that great cake.
Following a simple but comical script, each character accidentally reveals their true feelings about the other person, such as Frances asking where Aubrey got her cake, stating it was ‘disgusting’. Aubrey quietly reveals she made it and the three characters are thrown into upset. The script places us immediately into fully formed relationships between Bailey, Aubrey and Frances and it is naturalistically performed, as though they are really uncomfortable to expose their thoughts and cutting across one another to right themselves with their friend who they previously had fully supported.
As Bailey comments towards the end, ‘Suppose we could all get jobs’ suggests how their relationships were built on a trust that each other believed in their own creative projects, be it a novel, painting or baking, and were fragile to begin with. Nevertheless, he reaches out to console his friend at the end, ready to make amends. This short film Liars proves how honesty may not always work when supporting friends and a white lie can’t hurt.
Watch a clip from short film Liars below: