Wednesday, August 1, 2012

TOAD ROAD (2012) review

Toad Road (2012) (1st viewing) d. Banker, Jason (USA)

Aimless small town stoner James Davidson falls into a romantic entanglement with good girl Sara Jones, a surprise to everyone (not least of all himself). But while he gets high merely to escape a mundane existence, Jones sees within the chemically induced euphoria a “bigger picture,” one that offers a tangibly different plane of existence. Discovering an urban legend about the seven gates of Hell located nearby, she urges the smitten Davidson to help locate them…an expedition that forever alters their relationship. More rambling character study than horror film, this will likely prove tedious for anyone looking for cheap chills and thrills; it seems a shame to market Road as a scare flick since it’s geared more toward fans of Gus Van Sant than George Romero. That said, for patient viewers, the material resonates and the lived-in performances (all characters sport the actors’ real names) are authentic to the point of discomfort, with standout turns from the star-crossed leads.

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