Eric La Barr
Eric La Barr, Efrem P. Towns, Maxx Maulion, Aaron Perilo, Tony Rayner, Tia Marie Schroeder
"Four Guys" Review
This 22-minute short is the story of four guys making their way through life in the Big Apple, a journey that feels an awful lot like the sort of misadventures one might find in a Rob Schneider comedy or, say, the "American Pie" films.
Jack (Eric La Barr, who also wrote the film), Harry (Efrem P. Towns), Stuart (Maxx Maulion), and Hugo (Aaron Perilo) share an inner-city apartment at the mercy of a landlord (Tony Rayner) who seems to be looking for reasons to evict the foursome due to their late night shenanigans and sexcapades.
While Four Guys is about as straightforward as its title would imply, the film is nicely shot by D.P. Tom Sepenzis using a Panasonic HVX200 with an M2 35mm Adaptor giving the film a vastly superior look to many similar shorts. La Barr's script is part buddy flick, part sex comedy that works largely because the four leads have a solid chemistry and La Barr, in the matter of a mere 22 minutes, manages to give each character moments to shine and distinct characteristics.
Director Charles Clemmons paces the film casually, giving the humor room to breathe and the actors an opportunity to toy with the lines. This approach works particularly well with Maxx Maulion's Stuart and Efrem P. Towns' Harry, both of whom managed to make their lines even funnier the longer the camera lingered on their faces. In a supporting turn, Tia Marie Schroeder shined as Hugo's sexy girlfriend.
As a film site devoted to supporting up-and-coming independent filmmakers, The Independent Critic receives tons of submissions annually and many of the shorts tackle straightforward, inexpensive to produce themes just like this one. To be honest, many of them are downright painful to watch. Four Guys, on the other hand, is an entertaining and and fun short featuring solid performances from its ensemble cast, plenty of laughs in Eric La Barr's script and great production values including the film's camera work and Zale Morris's production design that turned a Studio City, CA apartment into the Big Apple.