‘Cop Car’ effective in every sense
“Cop Car” is not a movie with a huge scope. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Like so many of my favorite films, it takes place between a few select characters and depicts a single incident or situation that sets them all off. These kinds of movies tend to give the audience tons of room to interpret their own meaning. They aren’t often rich in character development right off the bat. We have to learn about these characters as the situation evolves, and that can be the most exciting thing as a viewer. This film is no different.
It opens very suddenly with two young boys wandering in the fields of Colorado who find an inconspicuously parked cop car. Them being daring kids with nothing to lose, they hop in and set in motion both the vehicle and Kevin Bacon’s character after them (the sheriff who’s up to some shady business in the isolated area). He needs the contents of the car, which will most definitely incriminate him if in the wrong hands, and the boys need to satisfy their boredom in a huge way. What begins is an engaging interplay between the two as everything unfolds.
It’s not a flawless film, instead embracing a ‘B-movie’ quality that’s meant only to thrill and entertain us. The skillful direction from Jon Watts goes a long way, and it’s obvious that he takes real care with his actors. Kevin Bacon as the sleazy, immoral cop is worth the price of admission alone, but he’s certainly not the only thing keeping this film together. The recognizable character actor Shea Whigham, along with the two boys played by Hays Wellford and James Freedson-Jackson, deliver solid support. It’s simple filmmaking, but effective in every sense. “Cop Car” is now playing in select theaters and available On Demand.