Violent debt collector Teddy is fed up with his boss Mr. Stone and starts to take care of the business in his own way. Mr. Stone and his bodyguards are not too happy about Teddy's behavior, but Teddy doesn't care a s**t. Or f**k.
Writer-director Jay Jennings from Los Angeles, USA, comes up with black & white, hand-held shot, low-budget, noir-spirited action/thriller with lots of original ideas and kick-ass dialogue. At first, you (should) probably notice the unusual, fast-paced editing style that reminds a little bit of reality TV shows. This is a big part of Hell to Pay's power – it's like watching the life of true criminals. Of course, highly capable actors and actresses have a tremendous effect on believability of Hell to Pay, as well.
Screenplay wise, the dialogue suits perfectly to cast members, but the plot is pretty much repeating itself. Teddy goes collecting debt, trashes out things and beats the hell out of people – that's what Hell to Pay mostly is. Still, the story remains unbelievably interesting, although there are nothing fancy about the characters and the look of the film. Hell to Pay feels and looks dirty, as it should. Jay Jennings has a great talent to keep the pace up and bring out the best of cast members - you could almost believe these people are real life criminal scumbags from the streets of Hollywood.
Charles Santore as Teddy is fantastic anti-hero – at the same time you want to punch him in the face, but feel (almost) sorry when people treat him badly. Pauli Macy as Teddy's father has great a charisma, and you could picture him easily to be the part of The Sopranos family.
Hell to Pay is a refreshing proof, that filmmaking is constantly evolving in the hands of low budget auteurs. The ones like Jay Jennings.