We humans are a funny bunch. The lies we tangle ourselves up in, the intricate web of deceit, betrayal and more we weave for ourselves. Some of us anyway.
In Dragonflies Only Live For 24 Hours, writer and director Richard Anthony Dunford (“P. O. V.”, “Jump (Short)”), has created one such intricate pattern of lies and deceit between two, seemingly, best friends.
It’s a tale that has more turns than an excited dog, it twists and weaves and jumps forward and back in time, all to some beautiful cinematography and lovely directing, but at the expense of, at times, being able to fully understand what’s going on.
But the truth is, I’m not quite sure we’re meant to know. There’s so much backstabbing and lying going on, I don’t think anyone knows who they can trust and Dunford brings that across wonderfully, as we don’t know either.
Frankie and Parker, Karl Kennedy-Williams (“Rise Of The Footsoldier 3”, “Yayo (Short)”) and Judson Vaughan (“Glamour Dolls”, “White Powder”), are two police officers and best of friends. Night after night they sit in Frankie’s car, waiting for a drug deal to go down.
But, by a long shot, that’s not the truth. Nothing in this film is as it seems as these two coppers are actually as bent as they come and are going about cleaning the streets in their own, unique, way, a way that goes against their full-time profession.
These officers do everything they can to get ahead: lying, cheating, planting evidence, coercing others, framing people. No-one is safe if you are in their way, not even other police officers.
It’s hard to know who started the whole thing between them but they now both go for it with some gusto, never faltering, never questioning, that is until some of their past begins to catch up with them.
Doubt begins to creep in, have they done the right thing, did they make the right decisions? You can see the point the two men begin to crack, and things begin to go downhill, fast.
Dragonflies Only Live For 24 Hours is a head scratching, twisty, turning movie that plays fast and loose with times. In this instance, that can lead to confusion as it isn’t always obvious where you are, what you’re watching; is this now? The past? The future?
What I will say about DOLF24H is that I believe it would make a cracking series. If Dunford could really take the time to help us get to know these characters, their motivations, the backstories. You can almost see the cliff-hangers on which to end each episode.
I’m not usually one to elongate a running-time but, in this particular instance, I really think it would work wonders. I feel like there’s so much more to these guys that we’ve lost in the short time we spend with them.
I want to know what sparks all the lies, who brought it up first, what was the grand plan? Instead we just dive right in after seeing the pair of them doing some mundane police work, investigating a missing gnome, and it’s hard for us to make the leap from that to doing what they do, which is the complete opposite end of the spectrum.
But therein lies a good story in of itself. It’s made me want to know more, to see more, to understand more about the characters within. For such a character driven story, what more could you want?