GUARDIANS will be available on Digital Platforms from 2nd December 2019.
GUARDIANS: A zero-budget dark comedy, that really, really is very funny.
The first rule for writing comedy is that it must make people laugh. Strangely, this is a rule that is very often overlooked in favour of witty stylisation or, laughs that are visual and/or at the expense of the characters. So, the audience does not engage with them and laugh at the situation, but just laughs at them, not with them, which lessens the experience considerably. Also, very rarely is comedy so strongly character driven, but in GUARDIANS, writer/director, Mark A.C Brown has achieved it all; witty writing, super funny visual gags and a great layered plot line. Strongly reminiscent of ‘Withnail and I‘, the story is based around two well drawn, layered characters, ‘Lavender’, played by David Whitney, and ‘Carlson’ played by Matt Prendergast. However, they are also about as chalk and cheese as could be. So when they find themselves thrown together for the very strong, and sadly all to real 21st century reason, that they both need a roof over their head, sparks fly. This strong premise also gives a pathos to both characters and bases GUARDIANS in a real situation that a wide audience can engage, and identify with.
Stuart Wright talks with director Mark Brown about GUARDIANS on the BritFlicks Podcast.
GUARDIANS has a third act which is complex, funny, exciting and outrageous...
Add in that the ‘house’ they are looking after is 200 years old, and comes complete with an old family curse, and the stage is set for much shenanigans. And what takes place next is almost pure theatre and incredibly funny to boot. In fact, GUARDIANS could be made into a stage play, a fact that is not surprising given that its writer/director has written for both stage and screen. However, this is Mark A. C. Brown’s first foray into feature directing, and he’s made the wise choice of sticking to what he knows, which has paid off. He has also chosen good, experienced actors and, taken on board one of the best bits of advice given to all zero budget film makers, ‘keep the location count down’. So what’s left is a story that centres around the strange events that unfold over a short space of time in the house, which are cleverly woven in and introduced with great skill as well as humour, to culminate in a third act which is complex, funny, exciting and outrageous.
Cinematographer Suzanne Smith gives the film a cinematic look that is precisely right for the piece and is super even throughout. Accurate, seamless photography that again obeys the first rule of film making – Cover the scene. Considering the complexity of the story and the miniscule budget, this was no mean feat. It just goes to show that no matter the restrictions, talent will always show, and GUARDIANS is a perfect example of what can be achieved with good communication, honesty and true collaborative spirit. www.guardiansfilm.co.uk
GUARDIANS is available now on Digital Platforms.