Introvert Anthony attends his best friend's housewarming party, which goes fine until brash, loud-mouthed Steve arrives. Things go from bad to worse as Anthony struggles to control the troublesome, alcohol-fuelled Steve.
I try not to judge indie films such as this on their technical quality, and occasionally try to overlook the acting as well when giving my thoughts.
Unfortunately even when overlooking these constraints of small-budget indie films, A Bad Influence leaves far too much to be desired for me to give it a much higher rating than a four. I believe that the filmmaker has great ideas. It's an interesting idea for a film and I had no problems with the twist or the plot. The dialogue is snappy. The acting is genuinely quite good.
However; A Bad Influence falls short in its character execution and direction. Having a 29 year old man give drugs to and attempt to assault a 17 year old girl followed by all the other characters only being upset because the 17 year old cheated on her boyfriend is an insane choice. The "antagonist" of this film is written too often as being the only person at the dinner party with progressive ideas, the only one who tells things how they are, and rather than make any compelling statement on how no person is truly bad or good, A Bad Influence chooses to just overlook the fact that we are supposed to side with this person even when he's a statutory rapist.
It is perfectly fine for a writer/director to include their own experiences in their filmmaking. But too often was this character used as a talking piece for the directors own thoughts on matters such as drug abuse and addiction, which raises the question: does the director agree with ALL of this characters ideas? Why is the film trying so hard to get us to side with this character?
A Bad Influence comes across as a film that did not involve any outside eyes to look over the script during its creation phase. I think that with a greater board of feedback maybe this could've been something really solid. Especially feedback from women...
Reviewed by jay-larox9 / 10
A surprising indie gem
When this film hits, it hits hard! In between the humour and banter between friends, there is a dark undercurrent that grows steadily towards a shocking climax.
There is some drug use and a fair bit of profanity. Despite moments of levity and some laugh out loud moments, there is a tension and intensity that I felt throughout the film.
This indie film came out of nowhere and I enjoyed every minute of it. Great performances from the cast who have great chemistry together. It is a cleverly written script with some real depth to the characters which had me flipping allegiances and sympathies as the story progressed to a satisfying conclusion.
I was entertained throughout. Definitely check it out!
Reviewed by movieguy30007 / 10
ENAGING INDIE FILM - GREAT WORK
This was a bloody good film that I was not expecting. The film is about a group of friends having a dinner party and it's all about the conversations. Out of those conversations secrets are revealed. The dialogue is witty, and funny and all the characters are interesting.
This film keeps your attention the entire time and is quite interesting. Most the actors are quite good, but there are also a few that are not up to the standards of the better actors. So casting is mismatched from super talented, to talented to some of the actors seemed like first timers. Some of the dialogue was quite crude and unnecessary, seemed like it needed to be vulgar to move the story forward. Overall, for a first-time director this film was pretty damn good, and everyone enjoyed the film immensely. The comedy and mix of drama were fantastic. A director to look out for, I can't wait to see what he has planned next.