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TOLL BOOTH (Gise Memuru)

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TOLL BOOTH (Gise Memuru)

Director: Tolga Karaçelik
Turkey   |   2010   |   96 minutes
Turkish, with subtitles in English
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FILM INFORMATION

Synopsis A taciturn tollbooth attendant shuffles between a suffocating home life with his ailing father and the monotony of the box where he works. Desperate to resist his father’s attempt to marry him off while determined to prove his worth by fixing his family’s broken-down car, he drives himself toward a nervous breakdown. After a reassignment to a desolate country road, he begins a flirtatious relationship with a woman who drives by each day. But is this salvation for the aging bachelor, or the further unraveling of his mind? An expert cast and keen art direction contribute to this wry, heartbreaking ode to lost dreams in a sleepwalking world.


About the Director Tolga Karaçelik was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1981. After receiving his law degree from Marmara University, he studied film at New York Film Academy. His short film, Rapunzel, received the Audience Award for short films at the SOHO International Film Festival in 2010. He also wrote and directed the music video for Çelik Çomak by the Turkish band Gevende. Toll Booth is his first feature film.


Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request.


Click here for Non-Theatrical & Exhibition screening information


NOW PLAYING: Check the film calendar for current screenings.


Featured in the Global Lens 2012 film series.



CAST

Kenan - Serkan Ercan
Hakki Baba - Zafer Diper
Nurgül - Nergis Öztürk
Kadin - Nur Aysan
Artun - Sermet Yesil
Cengiz - Ruhi Sar?

CREW

Director - Tolga Karaçelik
Writer - Tolga Karaçelik
Producers - Engin Yenidünya, Tolga Karaçelik
Cinematography - Ercan Özkan
Editors - Çiçek Kahraman, Evren Lus, Tolga Karaçelik
Sound - Umut Senyol
Music - Cem Adiyaman
REVIEWS


"A psychological pressure cooker that could blow its lid at any moment...Painstakingly written and directed by Tolga Karacelik,...The film’s swell of filial hatred communicates through fine acting and Ercan Ozkan’s eloquent photography, a grammar of light that cycles from gray to taupe to eau-de-nil." - The New York Times

“The crushing shadow of a domineering father bearing down on his offspring, a recurrent theme in world cinema and most particularly in the Turkish one, is given a minimalist but effective treatment in Toll Booth (Gise Memuru), the debut feature of Tolga Karacelik, which has already been awarded for Best First Film, Best Actor and Best Cinematography in the Antalya Golden Orange Festival…Shot with sober precision, whether dealing with reality or flights of imagination, and enormously assisted by Ercan’s performance in the lead…...Though facing the formidable challenge of putting a face on the nondescript operators manning highway toll booths, Karacelik manages to come up not only with a believable portrait of a 35 year-old man still struggling to reach emotional independence, but also with a tightly knit, closely controlled picture that should easily find its way into international festivals and art house cinemas.” – ScreenDaily

"Pic beautifully exteriorizes Kenan's locked-up fears and agonies. Like dreams, these reveries are somewhat surreal and occasionally nonsensical, but at the same time offer direct access to the character's subconscious. Never a heavy-handed Freudian dissection of Kenan's personality, pic remains light and even chuckle-inducing while never compromising the characters' sincere emotions. The dignified strength of Ercan's perf is especially helpful in this regard, though the cast is strong across the board." – Variety

“'Gise Memuru' is part black comedy, part family drama, part fantasy and part road movie, integrating all of these genres with such craft you would expect it’s coming from a veteran director. It is no wonder that the movie won three awards, including the Best Debut Film at the latest Golden Orange Film Festival....‘Gise Memuru’ is filmmaking at its best.” – Hurriyet Daily News

“Toll Booth, the debut film by director Tolga Karaçelik, addresses a series of interrelated issues such as alienation, the father syndrome and antisocial behaviour. And Karaçelik emerges with flying colours, giving us reason to eagerly anticipate his next film.” – Senay Aydemir, Festival On Wheels

"Tollbooth… is a hilarious work that chronicles the life of a repressed man whose fantasies intrude on his pedestrian days, as he cares for his aging father, he rebuffs a neighbor, and is reassigned from a busy tollbooth to an isolated one 3 hours away from home." – IndieWire

"A story about a quiet and introverted toll booth clerk from Turkish director Tolga Karacelik." – The Hollywood Reporter

“We've seen such themes before. But Karacelik is deft at finding magic in the mundane.” - Cleveland

FESTIVALS & AWARDS

Best First Film, Best Actor, Best Cinematography, 47th International Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival
Best Film Award, 20th Mannheim Turkish Film Festival
Best Film, Best Editing, Best Cinematography, Erzurum Dadas Film Festival
Best Actor – Special Mention, 16th Sofia International Film Festival
In Competition, Warsaw Film Festival
In Competition, Montreal Festival du Nouveau Cinèma
In Competition, Doha Tribeca Film Festival
Official Selection, International Film Festival Bratislava
In Competition, Thessaloniki International Film Festival
In Competition, Les Arcs European Film Festival
In Competition, Istanbul Film Festival
In Competition, Göteborg International Film Festival
International Eskisehir film Festival
Palto Film Days
Festival on Wheels

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