Cop Car ****


U.S./ Director Jon Watts/ 86mins


Synopsis: two 10 year-old boys who are running away from home find an abandoned police cruiser and steal it with the Sheriff (Bacon) in hot pursuit.


Director Jon Watts low budget action drama arrives with hype after wowing audiences in Sundance.


In Midwest America, Travis (Freedson-Jackson) and Harrison (Wellford) stumble upon an empty cop car in the middle of nowhere. Initially spooked by the vehicle, the two kids eventually drive off. The owner of the said vehicle is a corrupt and murderous cop in the middle of taking care of dirty business.


Kevin Bacon has been prone recently to giving over the top performances, however thankfully he has reined in his tendencies for this role. The two boys are incredibly impressive especially in the scenes, where the kids are displaying a nativity and innocence of things they encounter and experience. The kids have to become adults in order to survive in the world.


The overall feel of the film seems to have been highly influenced by early 70’s chase movies Vanishing Point and Duel also with a hint of The Hitcher.


While the story may not be original it mixes together drama, humour, horror and tension without falling into the usual pitfalls. The characters are given no back stories with the filmmakers leaving the audience to fill in the blanks.


The desert palette widescreen shot landscapes bring the sense of loneliness and isolation which encapture the character’s personalities.


A slow stylish neo Western B-movie with great performances, to make this a highly entertaining piece of cinema.


Reviewed by Paul Logan


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