Cop Car is a cool little film that features some of the most well-written child characters I've ever seen, as well as a scary Kevin Bacon performance. Regrettably, he's only scary by reputation, as we never really see him do anything of note to explain why we should be afraid of him. I think this film was good for what we got, but it should've been longer and featured far more Bacon brutality. He could've been a truly memorable antagonist.
Two kids, Travis and Harrison (Freedson-Jackson and Wellford, respectively), have run away from home and stumble upon an abandoned police car. After playing in it, they find the keys and take off with the car. Unbeknownst to them, the owner of the car, Sheriff Kretzer (Bacon), has just returned from burying a body and wants his car back because his next victim is in the trunk. What follows is a cat-and-mouse game between the kids and the sheriff, which never really goes as far as it could. The film ends with a shootout between Kretzer and his intended victim (Whigham), with the kids in the crossfire. We're never told what Kretzer is involved with, why he kidnapped this guy and killed another, or why nobody is looking for these kids. There's just too many questions and not enough answers.
Don't get me wrong, I liked Cop Car. I just wanted it to be better. There's great potential here for a great villain, a neat story, and a strong crime thriller. But the film never kicks it up a notch. Bacon gives a great performance, but I think Whigham outshines him, especially the scene where Whigham threatens the kids' parents and pets. He's way more frightening and villainous then Bacon, despite him being central to the story. I'm rambling now, but in short, Cop Car wasted a lot of potential but it's still a decent watch.