I hate to admit it but this American independent film is too date one of the best films I have seen at the 2014 EIFF, head and shoulders above many of the others. A cracking action packed film with three excellent performances from lead stars Michael C Hall, the always-great Sam Shepard and especially Don Johnson who particularly stands out. Why is Cold in July (2013) so good? Its action packed, its almost two hour running times just fly’s by - never a hint of a sore backside - full of humour, well co-written and directed by Jim Mickle whose last film was the remake of the Mexican horror movie We Are What We Are (2010).
Set in East Texas in 1989. Mild mannered family man Richard Dane (Hall) sleeping next to his wife with his young son sleeping in the next room, hears an intruder. He gets his father old gun and proceeds down the stairs to find an unarmed intruder Freddy Russell about to rob his home. Pointing the gun at the masked man it goes off spaying blood and brains all over the furniture, the wall and a large painting hanging there with. The police do not seem too concerned and put it down as self-defence. Shortly after the incident the local police in the form of Lieutenant Ray Price (co-screenwriter Nick Damici) inform Dane that Freddy Russell’s father Ben (Shepard), a violent man by all accounts, has been given parole from prison and that he planning a little eye for an eye action! Its not until things take a strange turn that Richard Dane is forced into a unlikely alliance with Freddy’s father and the flamboyant private eye and pig farmer Jim Bob Luke (Johnston) and things begin to get a little out of hand.
|Don Johnson arrive at the premiere in Edinburgh.|
My best recommendation is to just go and see this movie, if for nothing else to enjoy the on screen banter between Shepard and Johnston, you will not be disappointed.