There are a lot of good things to say about Circumstances 4, so let me get the negatives out of the way. The film feels like a low-budget indie movie. Sadly, the only way out of the problem is money and lots of it. It would be nice to upgrade the cameras, move them on dollies and tracks, and light the scenes up like the big boys in Hollywood. And sure, this could have also used a car chase here or there and some stunts like falling off a building and some brutally realistic fist fights. Oh, but those pesky insurance premiums and safety protocols. I get it, money — the plight of every independent filmmaker.
My admiration for this film is the fact that this is the fourth in its own cinematic universe. Not having seen the first three films, I can already see that the world of Circumstances has developed and expanded. The drug and human trafficking operations have grown but are kept at bay thanks to Reginald and Miraflores. Their characters have evolved and matured over time to where they are now. Supporting characters now have a chance to grow as T.A. is looking to get his life on the right track, and Ty and Angela are forced to make tough decisions or be caught up in the senseless violence of gang life.
“…told on the filmmakers’ terms without studio intrusion…”
Normally, having a cast this large often spells disaster for indie productions. However, the luxury of building this story over four films is that you can have characters in the middle of their arcs while having others that are just starting. I have to commend whoever did the opening prologue because it got me right into the action as well as into the shoes of the leads.
Action-wise, Circumstances 4 goes for gritty and violent. Executions are plentiful. Gun and fist fights flow steadily from the tap. Our heroes are pushed to their physical, emotional, and ethical limits to overcome evil. Please, someone, send a few million the filmmakers’ way for Circumstances 5.
The story by Dewayne Edwards and Ramon Sloan wins out in the end. There are many threads to follow in Circumstances 4, and the writers manage them beautifully. One of the great luxuries of indie films is that this story of a hitman and a federal agent is told on the filmmakers’ terms without studio intrusion, which often kills the fun.
Circumstance 4 is available for free on Tubi. Support indie films.
"…send a few million the filmmakers' way for Circumstances 5."