REVIEW: Toll Booth
– By Stephen Harper
After watching and enjoying ‘The Ex’ by Martin Stocks (read the review HERE), it was very pleasant to be able to follow that up immediately with another of his shorts ‘Toll Booth’. Again, like ‘The Ex’ this film has some excellent humorous moments, but this time adds a lot more horror ingredients into the equation. He teams again with actor Andrew Shire who plays Terry, who’s about start his night shift at his new job at a very secluded country toll booth.
Right from the off Terry meets Phil, who’s just one of many weird characters he comes into contact with on his first night. All the characters are different, from co-worker Phil who’s aggressive, to a female driver who’s delightfully odd, to a male driver who says nothing, but is obviously batshit crazy. These array of surreal characters build the piece into an almost folk tale. Instead of a haunted house or cabin in the woods, the toll booth becomes the structure that draws evil towards it.
Andrew Shire is extremely good as Terry, who’s a little odd himself, but in a down to earth and charming way. A chunk of the film is Terry trying hard to entertain himself in the booth throughout the night due to boredom, which is amusing. When the creepiness kicks in it’s actually quite effective. There’s no cheap jump scares, just plain good old strange noises, crying women and total isolation which hit all the right notes.
‘Toll Booth’ is a good old fashioned yarn.
Read Stephen’s review of Martin Stocks’ The Ex right HERE.