It’s Natural to Be Afraid is a series of fractured moments in the lives of two (or two and a half) characters. The short opens with two of them, Mark Drake and Mika Hockman, in a perplexing scene. For a while, it seems like director Doherty and writer Neil Fox are just doing an extended preview for a compelling character drama.
It turns out, however, the fractures are all part of the same timeline and there’s a reasonable explanation for everything.
Doherty delays the organizing just long enough it isn’t a gimmick and instead becomes the most effective way to construct Natural’s experience.
Both Drake and Hockman, who have varying degrees of responsibility, are both excellent.
Bill Ryder-Jones’s music is phenomenal.
Fox’s script is finely constructed drama, able to incorporate a slapstick sketch. It’s a beautifully put together little film.
Though the final shot’s a little too hipster.
Directed by Justin Doherty; written by Neil Fox; director of photography, Alex Lawrence; edited by Doherty and Steven Worsley; music by Bill Ryder-Jones; produced by Steve Clarke.
Starring James Clarke (Ryan), Mark Drake (Sam) and Mika Hockman (Mya).