Cop Car (2015)
Their first drive could be their last.
You smell a pig? I smell Bacon. Pork-ception? Kevin Bacon playing a sheriff? Terrible puns aside, this movie feels more like a short story turned feature length film than it necessarily does a full-blown movie, so I may admittedly need to restructure or even shorten this review from the standard format. Still, it is probably worth finding out what I thought of this one, because first impressions aside, it might be interesting to hear what I think.
So, the biggest departure here from my normal blathering reviews is probably going to be this part. We are all used to me writing out three paragraphs - usually engorged with semi-redundant and non-critical plot elements - about the story and leaving it on a cliffhanger so you don't have an excuse to feel like you've already heard everything about the story and can skip it if you were interested already. In this one though, the plot snowballs so much from one element to another that I really can't go into it in much detail at all without detracting from or heavily implying the ending, so instead I'll give you an extremely light version that really doesn't do this movie any justice at all.
We start our movie with two kids walking through some fields and listing off near every swear word they have heard in their lives. What they have planned is never really elaborated on, but they seem to be headed to some woods somewhere, getting distracted by the occasional thing like a snake hole. When they finally get closer to a "wooded area" they discover a cop car - and either by virtue of being kids with great imaginations or doing something bad that we aren't privy to decide they should employ stealth tactics to get by it. Much to their surprise the cop car is unattended, and as luck would have it the drivers door is unlocked and the keys hanging out in the sun visor. This prompts the kids to have a bit of an adventure - driving the cop car off and generally behaving as one would expect kids to do.
The meat of the rest of the movie surrounds the kid's adventure (and I don't mean it in "adventures in babysitting" kind of a way), the sheriff who the car belongs to trying to get it back, and all the twists and turns they could put into the movie without having aliens that are allergic to water. It seems at face value as though this would be an incredibly boring time, and indeed there is a good portion of what could be considered "down time" going on at parts, yet I didn't really find myself growing bored at all - much to my surprise, I actually found myself wanting to keep watching and seeing if it would end in a manner I thought, or discover just what might be going on (why would the Sheriff just leave his car unattended like that?).
Effects work isn't terrible for what there is off it. It's very much a "down to earth" kind of movie, with what would be considered mundane costumes and settings and characters - but mundane only in the sense that it's things we are so accustomed to. It's a cop car, it's a sheriff costume, it's a couple of kids who shouldn't be driving a car driving around and doing what you would expect little troublemakers to do. It's to the movies credit that it feels believable in that sense, even if it doesn't exactly open new avenues towards amazing worlds or anything of that sort.
Likewise, audio just kind of exists. I recall that I heard a few songs here and there - outside off a country song playing on a woman's car stereo - but none of them are particularly floating around in my head. The audio is used well towards creating tensions or adding to the scenes, it's just not going to be popping out an OST that you'll be clamoring to pick up. Acting is done quite well, and of course if a weak link had to be chosen it would end up being the kids - but to be fair, they do a pretty fine job of capturing what one would think of an imagination filled kid that apparently doesn't know any better. Sure, there are a few times when they might do something that seems weird, or deliver a line a little less believably, but overall they do a pretty decent job.
Now, I have to admit that rarely during a movie do I ever actually cringe about something. My levels of social awareness are generally not so high that I feel empathy towards events happening on screen enough to do such things - with the exception of blatantly brutal and graphic depictions of some things. That being said, when kids steal a cop car, one could expect that guns would be in said car and in fact there are. Like any warm-blooded adventurous kiddo, it's not far to expect that they would at some point play with those guns - which they do. Now, I'm not going to get into a political debate with people over my stances on guns: I like them, I own them, and I'm responsible with them - you can feel of them however you want. Watching those kids on the screen with those guns though, rest assured I can tell you that I cringing about it the entire time, and in my mind nothing good could come from it.
So it's not a movie for everyone - obviously, it's rated R. There's no real sexy times in it, although the string of profanities from the kids at the start probably did a good number at raising that MPAA rating up, and indeed any violence on screen is relatively limited and not entirely graphic either. What that tells me is that rating must have come primarily from the fact that the movie focuses around the kids and the trouble they get into (which if you get a couple of sub-teens prowling about in a cop car at a hundred miles an hour near farmlands with cows, you could say it'd be a constant life threatening situation). That right there should be the biggest indicator as to if you should check this movie out or not - but if you are okay with that, you might find a bit of an interesting story here to watch, one that could quite possibly make you want to follow it till the end to see what happens next.