Friday, 15 February 2013

The Toy (2013) (Short)


Directed By Derek Dennis Herbert

Written by Derek Dennis Herbert

Stars: Krystelle Lorraine, Benjamin Stevenson and Jonathan Sterritt

Today I had the pleasure of checking out Derek Dennis Herbert's new horror short The Toy. Derek has recently been finalising the film for release following a successful pledge campaign to raise money to make it. It's great to see that all the hard work has really paid off as I found The Toy to be a creepy, well made, 12 minutes of horror and all I can say is I would love to see more of the ominous doll Billy in the future!

It's Christmas time and young Tommy is excited to wake up in the morning to open all of his presents. His loving mother Patricia is equally as excited for him and after putting Tommy to bed she prepares for the following busy day. Christmas day soon rolls around and Tommy's estranged father Jonathan shows up much to his sons delight (and his mothers distaste). Jonathan brings with him two gifts, one rather disappointing and one a toywhich Tommy has wanted for ages, much like with young Andy in the original Childs Play with the Good Guy Doll! But it soon seems that something may not be right after Tommy is hurt and claims that the doll, who has told him that his name is Billy, is responsible. He also claims Billy has told him to murder his own parents. The Toy then delivers a cruel and haunting ending which leaves a nice touch of ambiguity as to whether it was actually the doll who has committed the vicious acts on display.  I would like to point out that none of this is delivered in poor taste and there is no on screen gore. This is not at all a hindering factor and actually works incredibly well in it's favour - you really dont need to see any extreme carnage in this film for it to be effective and I hope you will agree when you see it.

I really had a great time with The Toy. It tells a good story in its short running time and instantaneously grips the viewer. I loved the fact that the titular toy was a very non descript looking little thing as it just adds to the creepiness of it all. The mere thought that such a generic and harmless looking  childs toy, could be home to a murderous evil really raises a chill. The film also features some GREAT acting. Krystelle Lorraine steals the show as concerned and caring mother Patricia because she just comes across as genuine and likeable. Her scenes where she realises something horribly bad is afoot also shows that Krystelle has some impressive acting chops and I would love to see more of her in the indie horror world! However that's not to say the other cast members are not good as they also do a fantastic job. Benjamin Stevenson is brilliant as the cheery young Tommy and his change of character toward the end really impressed me. Likewise Jonathan Sterritt comes across as a genuinely caring father who perhaps has made some wrong choices in his life and hasn't been there for his son as much as he feels he should be.

The Toy is really well made, it looks extremely good for an indie film made on a low budget and is already making me excited to see what Derek may do next whether it be with another short or even a feature. My only complaint? I wanted to see more! Get yourself over to official The Toy website HERE and get the film rented or bought right now! I really don't think you will regret it, particularly if you are into horror stories involving toys/dolls or are simply a fan of great indie film making!

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