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Cold In July (2014)
Movie Review by The Gravedigger

Cold In July (2014) In East Texas, in 1989 a married couple, Richard (Michael C Hall of DEXTER) and Ann Dane, wake up to the sound of a burglar in their house. The husband has a gun, which he nervously loads with bullets--and accidently shoots the intruder when a clock makes a sound. It's a perfect shot--and brains are splattered all over the wall and sofa. Richard is taken to the police department, where officer Ray Price (Nick Damaci) tells him that it was self-defense and this won't even go to trial. However, he's very upset and feels terrible about the situation. Then, Price informs him that the burglar's father, Rusel (Sam Shepard) has just been released from a stint in prison. This news makes him nervous because there's no telling what this guy is going to do. So he gets safety bars installed on his house's doors and windows. But he goes to the funeral and runs into the father, who makes a veiled threat on his young son's life. He's now in a panic. He goes to the police for protection but they won't give it to him unless Rusel does something physical--which finally happens when his house is broken into and his kid's toy bear is dismembered. The police finally agree to set up protection, though things do not go as expected. You see, Rusel is in the house and hiding in the attic. There's a scene where he's standing over the sleeping boy, looking threatening--but he doesn't do anything and escapes. The police pursue, with Richard following them. They do catch Rusel--and beat him and leave him, unconscious on the railroad tracks. This doesn't seem right to Richard--so he rescues him at the last minute. It's at this point that the movie takes a completely different turn. You see, the burglar that Richard shot is not Rusel's son--and the police wanted to catch Rusel for an entirely different reason, which has something to do with his very much alive offspring.

This is a great, faithful adaptation of the Joe Lansdale book. Highly recommended. Directed by Jim Mickle (STAKELAND).

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