Friday 29 May 2015

Cold In July: Mini Review...

What's it about?
A pulp thriller set in 1989 in which a humble family man, a picture framer by trade, kills an intruder in his home only to be flung into an ever darkening criminal underworld in which vengeance will cleanse the wicked. From Jim Mickle, the director of Stake Land, and based on the book by Joe R. Lansdale.
Who would I recognise in it?
Michael C. Hall, Don Johnson, Sam Shephard, Vinessa Shaw, Wyatt Russell and others.
Taking stylistic cues from John Carpenter (who is acknowledged directly in the credits) - from the titles font to the pounding pulse of the synth soundtrack - this brooding thriller combines exploitation thrills with slick production value. Taught, efficient, and disturbing throughout, the film's 80s aesthetic is simultaneously played for smiles and realism. Triumphant hair metal and nascent mobile phones on one hand, video rental stores and old school machismo on the other. Blood, guns, and damaged male bonding is where it's at here, as fraught explosions of violence and gore blend into a pulse-pounding, primary-coloured haze of no-nonsense Southern darkness. Indeed, the colour scheme - rich blues, greens, and literal washes of blood-red light - seems to take some inspiration from Jason Eisener's "Hobo With A Shotgun"; this is like a neo-grindhouse revenger with some decent money to its name. A thoroughly effective thriller with a dark heart and an electro-groove. On the cusp of Great.

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