Friday, September 16, 2011

FRIENEMIES (DC Shorts Festival)

Directed by: Anthony Brenneman
Length: 14 mins
Source: DC Shorts

Of all of the shorts shown at the free lunch showing last Thursday, "Frienemies" is the only film that has stayed with me. Perhaps it's because every girl my age has had a "frienemy" wreak havoc in her life, but what made the film resonating to me was how real it felt. From the costumes to the hair to the dialogue, the entire story felt like it was plucked out of an average high school in middle America.

"Frienemies" tells the story of two childhood friends, Tanya and Isabel, who have seemingly grown apart since attending high school. When Tanya, who has now become a part of the popular clique, asks Isabel to attend a party with her and a few of the popular boys, Isabel thinks that finally their friendship is mending. Once they're at the party, Isabel realizes that Tanya had no intentions of being friends again when she yells at Isabel for not drinking and hooking up with one of the boys. (SPOILER) As revenge, Isabel takes a picture of Tanya, passed out naked on top of one of the boys with one of the boys' phones. The "sext" gets sent around school and Tanya loses her status as a popular girl. One of the boys is arrested and charged with child pornography and statutory rape, while the other is suspended from school. Because all of her "friends" desert her, Tanya leans on Isabel for friendship, not realizing that Isabel caused the controversy in the first place.

At certain parts I thought the acting was a bit wooden and the premise unoriginal, like a old "7th Heaven" episode, but overall I enjoyed the film. The script was well written and it showed through the acting; when confronting Isabel at the party, Tanya scoffs at Isablel's tears and coldly sneers, "We're not friends." They're such simple words, but they're ones that are commonly exchanged between teenage girls. I appreciated the flat-ironed hair, Isabel's obvious discomfort and tugging at her party clothes, and the awkward silences between Tanya and Isabel - all were elements that made the story believable and the film real.

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