You appear to be using a browser that is no longer supported. You may find that you are unable to use all features on the site. We recommend upgrading or changing your browser, if possible.
Skip to main content
Search... Open this section

4 — Bim Ajadi

In the depths of his dingy basement flat, a young man prepares for a high stakes game of Connect 4. However, we soon realise this is no ordinary game. As the suspense builds and tensions run high during his obsessive training, we are finally introduced to his formidable opponent.

Classroom Activities

Print All

Critical

  • Watch the opening section of the film (00:00 – 00:46). The director is attempting to make us feel a sense of tension, how have they used cinematic techniques to achieve this?
  • Consider the camera work used in the tea pouring scene (01:11 - 01:31), how has the director used shot size, camera angle and editing to indicate that something isn’t quite what it seems?
  • Watch the montage of the main character playing the game (01:44 – 02:23) and think about the use of extreme close-up and camera movements. How does the director use these to successfully show that the game is having an impact on the player’s mental state?
  • Look closely at the scene where the game is played between 02:40 – 03:22: this is a dream sequence. What is different about this scene versus the scenes which take place in the ‘real world’ of the story?
  • Examine the still at 03:28, how does the mise-en-scène reflect the protagonist’s mental state?
  • Watch the long, slow pan at 04:35 – 04:50. What do the audience expect to see? What do the audience actually see?
  • The motif of the number 4 is repeated at various points throughout the film. Can you spot instances of the recurring number 4? Why do you think the director has done this?
  • Watch the film again and consider the use of captioning/subtitles. Do you notice that not every sound is described in the captions? Which sounds are and why are they important?

Cultural

  • Captions are words displayed on a screen that describe the audio or sound in a film. Captioning allows viewers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing to follow both the dialogue and the action of a film. Why do you think captioning is important?
  • Find out how may screenings with captioning (sometimes referred to as subtitles) are available at your local cinema this week. Do you think this is enough? Discuss what cinemas can do to make their deaf and hard of hearing audiences feel more welcome.
  • The director’s website tells us that the protagonist in this film has agoraphobia. This is a commonly misunderstood disorder. Find out more about agoraphobia and bust the myths commonly associated with the condition.
  • The protagonist becomes obsessed with playing Connect 4. We all have things we like, things that bring us comfort that we like to do to make us feel safe or lift our spirits, but sometimes we can fixate on these things and develop unhealthy relationships with them. What examples of unhealthy relationships are you aware of in our modern society? What can we do to combat these unhealthy habits and encourage people to develop healthy relationships? (Guide students to exploring social issues around obsessive behaviours such as gaming, doom scrolling, social media, etc.)
  • The director of this film, Bim Ajadi, is a profoundly deaf creative. Why is it important for people from diverse backgrounds, including disability, to be represented in the creative industries?

Creative

WRITE

  • Write a story which centres around the playing of a well-known board game.
  • Write a speech advocating for a more inclusive approach to opportunities within the creative industries. Include facts and statistics and ensure you use persuasive writing techniques to convince your audience.

FILMMAKING

  • Explore captioning! Try your hand at captioning a film you’ve previously made in class. Remember that only sounds which are vital to the understanding of the action are required, while all dialogue should be captioned. Try to follow the conventions of captioning (i.e. dialogue typed as normal, sounds in parentheses, sounds synchronised so that the caption appears at the same time as the sound.
  • Make a film which uses cinematic techniques to create tension around the completion of an everyday activity. Anything from brushing your teeth, to doing the dishes, to waiting at a bus stop – make your audience feel that something isn’t quite right!

STEM

  • Develop an idea for a single player board game and make a prototype. Remember the user should be able to have fun playing this all by themselves.
  • Design a web campaign which advocates for more inclusive cinema spaces. This might include social media posts, a website or short videos which explain why this is an important issue.
  • Conduct a survey to find out your school’s favourite board game. Find a creative way to collect your data and encourage people to participate in the survey. Present your findings in an informative and interesting way.

EXTRA-CURRICULAR

  • Organise a sponsored board game marathon where your group or class play board games for an extended period without stopping. You could donate the money to school funds or, in honour of this film, to a local or national charity which helps deaf and hard of hearing people.

Clip Details

Genre Drama
Curriculum Areas Health and Wellbeing, Modern Languages, Literacy and English
Director Bim Ajadi
Country of Origin UK
Medium / Content Live Action, Fiction, Colour, Sound, No Dialogue
Themes Feelings, Danger / Fear, Culture / Society, Identity / Self
Clip Length 06:08
Clip Length 06:08
Age Group S1-S3, S4-S6