written & directed by Soren Johnstone
produced by Michael Babiarz & Soren Johnstone
Michael Thomas Townsend
shot & edited by Soren Johnstone
A Warren Lane Picture
Play With Fire
There are no choices when you refuse change. This is the heartbeat of a town.
‘Play with Fire’ follows the unsettling life of 28-year old Christian. His complacency has trapped him in the small town that he grew up in. The town is nestled in the mountains, a raging river runs through it, and giant smoke stacks from the local lead smelter loom overhead.
Christian's life unravels as he confronts the hopelessness of drug trafficking, loneliness and boredom of small town life. He divides his time between managing his business and pondering his existence. He lives between the remnants of the hopes and wishes of the women in his life, past and present. His girlfriend Melody wants him to come to the big city with her in order to start over with a clean slate. As she leaves, his longtime friend Joel comes back to town. He attempts to involve Christian in a risky scheme to undercut the local drug dealers with a better, and cheaper, product from the city. The local drug lord, The Tax Man, runs a tight ship, and his enforcer, Grim, watches over the town like a guard dog. Joel’s behavior quickly spirals out of control, and he ends up on the wrong side of Grim’s gun. Feeling responsible for his friend’s death, Christian befriends Joel’s younger brother, Matt. He takes him under his wing and tries to make up for what he did and did not do. Spending time with Christian delivering drugs, collecting debts, and going to house parties, Matt is exposed to the underbelly of this small, mountain town.
‘Play with Fire’ is a story of twisted loyalty, loss and despair. It deals with very real situations that are happening in small towns everywhere. Shooting in a guerilla style the lens captured something that was not only raw and visceral, but something beautiful; something that transcended its location and touched the audience. “Play with Fire” is the heartbeat of many towns.
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