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Two kids find themselves in the centre of a deadly game of cat and mouse after taking a sheriff's cruiser for a joy ride.

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Cop Car movie full length review - Cop Car

Two kids (James Freedson-Jackson and Hays Wellford), goofing off in rural Colorado, stumble upon an abandoned cop car, deciding to take it for a spin!

After this, the film takes us back to why the car was left alone and empty: a crooked sheriff (Kevin Bacon), who had confiscated some dope from two hoods (one was killed and buried by the cop while the other is left face-beaten and plastic-tied but alive), had to leave it for a moment. When the sheriff returns, he sees that the car is gone and must be found, later realizing two kids had taken it! So he's off to find the kids, with various obstacles making his life difficult. He uses a piece of rope to pull open a door lock, stealing a car in a neighborhood trailer park, narrowly ducking identification from both a local and a motorcycle officer. The hood in the trunk (Shea Whigham) is able to manipulate the kids into helping him loose, taking them hostage through the use of a shotgun. Whigham plans to shoot Bacon once he is told across a radio of their whereabouts by the boys on where to find the car. Meanwhile, a motorist (Camryn Manheim) noticed the boys driving wildly down the road, just missing her. She returns to find them, but it turns out to be quite the mistake as she encounters the sheriff, the cop car with the boys trapped in the back seat, and the possible bullet of a machine gun (Whigham, hidden behind a well placed windmill).

At a lean 90 minutes, with a game Bacon who just oozes sleaze and corruption, there's a gulp-in-the-throat suspense due to the boys' cluelessness when behind the wheel of a car or holding loaded guns. Add Whigham, with a face just a bloody, battered mess, telling the kids that if they inform Bacon of letting him out of the trunk he'd kill their parents and pets(!), and there's lots of menace directed possibly at the kids' welfare. Manheim is handed a minor part as the motorist, with little much in the way of screen time to give the character any definition. She's every bit the wrong-place-wrong-time type of character these kinds of movies always offer us. Bacon avoiding multiple problems that might halt his progress towards getting to the kids is part of the film's tension: will he or won't he find them, and what then? Whigham is an added wrinkle that further complicates matters. The rural setting is all "Badlands" in its open fields and depiction of how boredom and the absence of anything positive to occupy time can lend itself to a dark road of violence and danger. Compelling in how it alternates between what Bacon is up and the kids: the knowledge that the cop and kids will eventually meet is certainly frightening. Whigham is that monkey wrench that just makes things so much worse. A cow, of all things, complicates Bacon more than Whigham ultimately does! A ricocheted bullet could lead to tragedy as the kids use a cop gun to burst a window. That is Mrs. Bacon's (Kyra Sedgwick) voice across the radio as the dispatcher his cop continues to contact so that he can move the police off of the dial he needs to contact the boys in peace.