Having an Amazon Prime account has its perks, and no, I'm not being paid to say that. Unfortunately. One of the nice things about having a Prime membership is that I can take a chance on indie films that I've never heard of without really risking anything. I took advantage of this recently with a short movie (about 50 minutes long) called B4.
Conceptually the movie is a mind bender. A group of friends- one couple and their third wheel- go out to see a concert under the impression that their single friend will be meeting up with a new date after. When this embarrassingly falls through, they return to the parking garage they left their car in to go somewhere else as consolation, but there's a problem: the car is gone. Furthermore, every time they try to leave the parking garage, they end up where they were before, on the B4 level. Get it? It's a pun.
Of course, whether or not I had to pay for it individually, this high concept movie still did take an hour of my time, so the question is, was it worth it? I think so. There's a very surreal quality to the events that unfold in B4 that makes it engrossing to watch. I don't want to spoil anything too essential here so I won't go beyond the bare concept but when time and space start wrapping around each other in the parking garage, the mystery surrounding the why and the how of both is compelling.
The acting is also surprisingly good for a low budget indie production, and producer/actress April Wade is a stand out as the most motivated and proactive of the main trio of would-be escapees. The settings are simple but do their jobs well, especially the garage that the majority of the film takes place in. Its emptiness and endlessness is eery in contrast with its usual banality as a set of parking spaces.
The budget does cut into the believability of some injury effects, but these are never the focus of the film and are easily overlooked. The final climax of the movie is also a bit underdeveloped in terms of its specific explanation, but luckily the groundwork is good enough to carry the movie past that point to its conclusion, which remains satisfying and well-earned. Tensions rise and take the protagonists to optimistic highs and disturbing depths along the way.
Ultimately, I liked it quite a bit. It probably won't be the best thing you watch this year but for a fast watch that makes you think, you could also do a lot worse. I give it three and a half infinite parking garages out of five.