The Four-Faced Liar Review

the four faced liarI wanted to love this film. Really, I did. Set in New York, twenty-something students, promises of complicated interpersonal dynamics, and a tagline saying ‘a comedy about drama’.

For a quick synopsis (without spoiling it for you) a couple walk into a bar, meet another couple and that couple’s lesbian friend. They all start hanging out together. Laughs are had, lesbian is attracted to girl from the new couple, girl from the new couple wrestles with her feelings… anyone feel like we’ve been here before?

Simply put, it fell flat. The film focuses around a set of five friends, supposedly students, and follows them as their relationships develop and in turn fall apart. Why was it though that no-one in this film looked to be in their early twenties? How did the new couple (Molly and Greg) afford such a swanky pad? Why were they planning their wedding? Why did the couple they met (Chloe and Trip) have such a complex relationship that had apparently been evolving since the dawn of time? Trip and Bridget (the lesbian) have apparently been hanging around in NYC for years and years… with their supposedly quirky teeth-brushing routine. These were not recognisable students to me.Four Faced Liar Teeth Brushing

Another issue I had with the film was that I really truly did not care about the characters. I felt that I was thrown into their lives, and was supposed to recognise them and predict their patterns of behaviour. Perhaps something was lost in translation? Maybe I should have made something of the fact that Greg was from Jersey, or New Jersey, or something. Does that mean something?

Oh, and speaking of lost in translation, so much of the dialogue in this film was inaudible there were points where I just did not know what was happening. Either through mumbling of the actors or presumably poor boom operation, I had to pause, skip back, and blast the volume to catch quite a few bits of this film. Such as the random moment when lesbian Bridget tells heterosexual and engaged Molly that Molly’s biting her lip is her ‘thing’ – the classic trait she finds attractive. Prior to this, the chemistry between the two was zero. In fact, it didn’t seem that the supposed chemistry stemmed from any real connection; more Molly’s boredom with Greg and the alternative being offered.

I don’t want to spoil things for you, if you want to see this film, do. But be prepared for some classic (and utterly implausible unless your partner sleeps eight hours solid and never needs the bathroom) sneaking around scenes, some proclaiming that the lesbian lifestyle and the family lifestyle are mutually exclusive and therefore a tragic idea, and some good old aligning of lesbianism with stereotypical manhood. Be it in terms of attitudes to relationships, attitudes to using the bathroom, or indeed attitudes to sitting on the sofa.

The direction of the film is good – nice montages, good aerial shots – and the music suits too. But to me, this was ‘Imagine Me and You’ in new and improved bland flavour. From snooping around on other reviews, it would appear that the LGBT reviewing community are supportive of this film, and the non-sexuality affiliated reviewing community are not. This time, I am siding with the latter. I am always happy to see an LGBT film garner some attention, but sadly I think this one should probably quietly pass us all by.

This gay film review was written by Amy Ekins, writer of fiction and non-fiction alike. She is training as a Project Manager for a publishing company, a graduate of English Literature and Creative Writing, and can be found at www.twitter.com/amyeek – Go on, give her a tweet!

1 comment

  1. Jamie
    Author

    I didn’t dislike this film anywhere near as much as Amy. I didn’t love it, but I did enjoy it.

    I think you have a very good point with ‘lost in translation’, I think the film was very USA-centric, there were times when I felt like I was watching an extended edition of Dawson’s Creek.

    However, I’m a sucker for a montage scene and this film had some good’uns. I particularly liked the New Year’s Eve scene, with the slow motion/fast forward effects.

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