Hard Time Bus film review

After winning ‘Best Feature’ at the American Black Film Festival, Director Dean Charles, Producers Nicola Gregory and production company, 2HOTFILMS, premiered their relationship drama ‘Hard Time Bus’ in Manchester’s HOME on 3 August.

In a feature-length debut, the award-winning director teamed up with Birmingham writer, Owen Mowatt and Actor, Neil Reidman to create this fascinating, multilayered drama. Based on real life experiences, ‘Hard Time Bus’ encapsulates the misadventures and comeuppances of a commitment-phobic everyman, Mark Bishop.

Bishop, played by Neil Reidman, is best described in classical terms as a Lethario character – in modern days, he may be described as the ultimate player. With multiple short-term partners, growing complacency in his relationship and failure to prioritise time between friends and his long-term girlfriend, Mark soon finds out that apologises eventually have an expiration date.

After a rude awakening, Bishop makes hasty plans to marry long-term girlfriend Denise, but patience is severely tested following a complicated web of lies and deceit.

Unique in its pitch and delivery, and starring an all-black cast, ‘Hard Time Bus’ demonstrates the reality of what an audience may know to be true; love can make us blind to what is around us, and sometimes, it may just be the thing that hurts us the most.

In an eye-opening insight into the male mind, audiences will see the obstacles and the hard time bus that hits Mark as he struggles to communicate with the person he loves. Finally letting down the barriers, and overcoming the overt masculine status and stereotype that many men often succumb to, Mark’s character epitomises the struggle of progressing from men’s societal perception.

In an emotional rollercoaster, audiences will experience the three dimensional nature of characters. With more than just one motive, all characters go through some sort of journey. Whether Denise emulates a positive role model as a strong black woman who gives her partner the benefit of the doubt, or whether her unwavering tolerance is a sign of weakness is only one of the questions audiences are made to decide.

In a pursuit for forgiveness, relationships will be tested proving that the course of true love never did run smooth.

TNT Entertainment Alexia Hendrickson

Photo Credit: 2hotfilms

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