Jobe O’Brien has never been treated right by his drunken father, but he finds an outlet for control and energy when he takes up track and field. However, even there, he finds himself plagued by cruel bullies. But he keeps on working to become the best runner he can be. Along the way, he seeks to discover what Christianity really means as he pursues the prize and a girl he is falling in love with.
Production Quality (1 point)
As an indie, likely under-funded production, 1500 Steps is a bit raw at times. Camera work tends to be random and there is some poor lighting and odd video quality throughout. Audio quality is fine except for the very loud soundtrack and some obvious background noises. However, not all is bad here as the outside scenes are mostly filmed well and props are used well. It’s hard to pinpoint what the editing plan here was, because there isn’t really much to speak of. On the whole, it’s clear that funding was stretched for this film, but it’s hard to know if they did the best with what they had.
Plot and Storyline Quality (0 points)
Unfortunately, this film is very aimless in its storyline and mostly consists of mindless sports montages. The first half of the film especially has no clear purpose or direction. A majority of the dialogue is quite empty, thus creating vague characters, except for the strawman villain character. Other characters tend to be off-putting and annoying. The Christian message is very vague as it tends to focus on a lot of dumb and fruitless high school subplots. The rest of the story focuses on a predictable sports redemption arc that leaves us without the ability to appreciate the characters and their struggles. While there are attempts at realism here, the presentation doesn’t do enough to make the film interesting.
Acting Quality (1 point)
This cast is mostly inexperienced, it seems, but they are at least trying to be realistic. A lot of the time, they are quite drab in their performances, while some cast members tend to be loud and uncouth. However, not all is bad here, and further coaching would help some of the cast members show more emotion. Unfortunately, there was a lot in this film that just didn’t come through properly.
It’s really hard starting out in the indie film world, but even when funding suffers, you can always amplify your plot to make your work stand out in the sea of ambitious film makers. This is what we really need anyway: dynamic plot writing to transform the Christian movie field. Once this happens, the entertainment world will never be the same.
Final Rating: 2 out of 10 points