'Cop Car': One of the best dark comedies of the year

Cop Car, directed by Jon Watts, had to be one of the best films screened at Fantasia this summer. Being a fan of dark comedies (a genre Fantasia serves up in abundance) and Joel and Ethan Coen, Cop Car resonated well with me. Let me take a moment to gush over what a fan I am of star Kevin Bacon, who is quite a reserved and humble individual. This is one of Mr. Bacon's darker roles, but he eases in and out of the bad-sheriff good-sheriff routine in a matter of seconds. This movie features one of my funniest laugh-out-loud moments of the year, competing alongside that movie theatre scene from Judd Apatow's Trainwreck.
The screening began with Black Eyes written and directed by Rick Spears, a short film about a young boy and girl getting revenge against the school bullies. Cop Car continues the story with Travis (James Freedson-Jackson) and Harrison (Hays Wellford), who are both on the run from their homes. In pure juvenile fashion, the boys expand their vocabulary of explicit language. Along their journey they find an abandoned squad car and decide to investigate this unnatural occurrence. They hesitate at first, but then decide to take the car out for a test drive. On the other side of town, Sheriff Kretzer (Kevin Bacon) is disposing of bodies, which seem to be young children, in a quiet and subdued fashion. As he returns to find where he parked his squad vehicle, he notices its disappearance. His good sheriff routine kicks in as he calls dispatch and says he will handle the situation, and returns home to liquidate some assets. He finally gets a hold of the joyriders and tells them all he wants is the car back and to not open the trunk. Unbeknownst to him, the joyriders have already seen inside the trunk, which opens a Pandora's Box of thrilling events to come. 

Cop Car is a dark joyride of twists and turns that just does not stop until the final bullet is fired. We feel a sense of adventure alongside of Harrison and Travis, who are not only threatened by the people around them, they put themselves in physical danger as well. Kevin Bacon as Sheriff Kretzer will keep the audience guessing as to whether he is good or bad. Jon Watts has made the perfect dark comedy that will sit well with audiences.

Rating: 4.5/5 


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