Tuesday, August 18, 2015

[Review] Cop Car

New primarily on VOD releases are often chalked up as inessential, but there are always a few worth seeing--ones that are actually better than a lot of things taking place on big screens. Cop Car--not to be confused with anything that has to do with Ride Along or Cop Out, is one of the good ones, and it's a salient vehicle for a mustached Kevin Bacon.

Opening with some well-framed and scenic landscape shots, we meet two miscreant kids (they can't be older than 12). They're the type that recite swear words as a rebellious hobby and throw rocks at stuff. Anyway, they stumble upon an unoccupied cop car and decide to take it on a joyride. Meanwhile, the scuzzy cop that left the vehicle behind (played by Kevin Bacon) is now on the prowl to find it, and we sense that things are going to get ugly.

Sometimes films with a simple, focused, and straightforward premise that can sustain their feature length are great viewings, and Cop Car definitely falls into that category. One thing to note is how well the dialogue is written for these young boys. It sounds natural and convincing, and it carries a shrewd naivety that brings about a "that sounds like something they would say" factor in the given situation. In a way, the film has a coming-of-age feel to it, mixed with neo-Western tinged dark comedy, somewhat reminiscent of last year's grisly Blue Ruin. There's also a twist here, and even though it's revealed early on, I'm gonna choose to keep my mouth shut.

Kevin Bacon finds himself in one of his more interesting roles in a while, and he does this sort of thing well. The narrative is paced on the slower side, but it's the type of slow that isn't tedious. It's a steady build of burn. I've seen a couple of complaints about the ending, but I personally thought it concluded in a way that was consistent with the audacious story.


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