Parking officers, the most hated people on earth it seems. We constantly see them in every city, checking so you follow the law. There are some nice ones out there, just doing their job. Then we have the arrogant ones who loves to make people angry. Either way, this is a job that is needed, to make some order over people who try and care less about how long you can park. So what if you have a parking officer who loves to take pictures on his Facebook page, on his victims, constantly, and make fun of the people he give a ticket ? This is one of the subjects in Friended To Death, a new comedy by director Sarah Smick, mostly known as an actor in smaller films like This Is Life and Here´s The Kicker. Frended To Death is her second feature film as a director. Another subject that is brought up here is, what if you faked your own death to see how many show up at your funeral ? Sounds very weird indeed, but reading about the plot, and to see lead actor Ryan Hansen in a very different character than he have ever done before, got me hooked up. Is Friended To Death a new dark comedy that have something to offer, or is this another release that no one will remember ?
Michael Harris ( Ryan Hansen ) is a parking officer, who is always ready to make sure parking tickets will be placed on every guilty car. To make fun of everyone who have a ticket, he takes pictures of their cars and make fun of them. One day at the head building for parking officers, Michael´s boss Chuck Hensson ( Robert R. Shafer ) call him in to his office. Because of his behavior, posting car pictures on Facebook, and making fun of people he give tickets, Chuck have no choice but to fire Michael from his job. Outside the building, Michael is furious. He meets Emile Lewis ( James Immekus ) out on the street, who is also fired from his parking officer job. Emile is also depressed about losing his job, but offer Michael to go along for a drink. But suddenly Michael see on Facebook, that one of his oldest friends Joel ( Zach McGowan ) had a party without inviting Michael. Just to find out why, Michael go to Joel for answers, but leave upset. Michael hope to find some comfort, so he goes to see Emile to have a conversation. Michael begins to think, what if he fake his own death, who many people would care ? Emile think this is a crazy idea, but Michael decide to do this, just to see how many real friends he have. Michael use Emile´s Facebook profile to write that Michael is dead. But what Michael did not plan, is how he is supposed to be dead, so people really belive he is no longer alive.
Friended For Death is a smaller film, so if you are expecting a bigger production with lots of famous actors, you are in the wrong place. On the other hand, if you like to see smaller films, with an odd message, this might be a film for you. Some might say that lead actor Ryan Hansen have chosen a very strange way, going from big productions as GI Joe: Retaliation and the 2009 remake of Friday The 13th, to a very small film like Friended To Death. From my personal view, it feels like he have done a very daring move. Most actors whould not go this way, unless they know they will get another role safely. I think this is a very daring choice, even if Friended For Death did not screen in many countries. Sometimes you have to take risks, if you choose a film that you like. Friended For Death is a very bizarre mix of dark comedy, that takes on social media on the internet, how it effect us, to be loved by people. The best part of Friended For Death is the character Michael Harris, a man with very few friends, but he still thinks he is really awsome. He is kind of nerdy, and odd, but at the same time you can´t avoid feel sorry for him. The negative part is that some of the other actors, are not very good. You can tell some of them are not professional actors yet, but it does not affect the final result of the film. Director Sarah Smick have some really funny ideas on the table, some of them works pretty well, while some others don´t get the chance to shine, as i would have hoped for. Overall, i would still say i had a good time watching Friended For Death, because i like odd comedies, and we need more of this in new films. The dvd release is on the way, so you can watch Friended For Death on VOD on several web sites. If you like odd comedies, with dark humour, then Friended For Death is a good choice.