Playing With Fire
27 Apr 2022
Mohammed Mansaray, Calum Carr, Emily Olum
Two gangsters find themselves dealing with more than they can handle while helping an associate get even with someone.
It is night-time and three criminals are up to no good. They are inside a parked car and one of them exits and goes after a guy who wronged him. The other two still in the vehicle are Jay (Mansaray) and Calvin (Carr). Some time passes and their friend, whose name is Kyle, has not returned, so they go out to look for him. As they search, they end up speaking to a prostitute who might know something, encounter some thugs and begin to realise that they might be in danger.
This short dark mystery crime thriller contains elements often seen in these type of films, including dangerous people, guns, murder, threatening behaviour and double-crossing. The atmosphere is rather bleak and there is a constant feeling that things are going to turn bad. The narrative effectively paints an image of the lives of criminals that are filled with danger and uncertainty. The screenplay explores the relationship between Jay and Calvin and indicates that the two of them are close. Basically, the audience follows the two crooks as they act like detectives, trying to figure out what happened to Kyle and as the story progresses, the tension rises and rises.
The acting is rather strong. Mansarary in particular is very convincing as a determined, no-nonsense criminal, who can be threatening and aggressive when required. Olum does a great job as the sleazy lady of the night.
As the director of photography, Nzimah Akpan creates a look that is dark and moody, which goes very well with the general atmosphere. Savfk composes music that sounds dramatic and sinister, making the scenes more impactful.
With his directorial debut, Bishop brings to life a story that shows the consequences of living a life of crime and making unwise decisions. It is a hard-hitting look into crime and points out that such a lifestyle will lead to devastating events and that criminals can be menaced by even those closest to them.