5.9/10
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Small Town Murder Songs (2010)

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A modern, gothic tale of crime and redemption about an aging police officer from a small Ontario Mennonite town who hides a violent past until a local murder upsets the calm of his newly reformed life.

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6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Rita
...
Ava
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Walter
Vladimir Bondarenko ...
Deacon
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Steve (as Eric McIntyre)
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Sam
...
Jim
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Washington
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Officer Kevin
Erin Brandenburg ...
Officer Michelle
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Jenny
...
Deb
Andrew Penner ...
Worker 1
Alan Penner ...
Worker 2
John Penner ...
John Penner
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Storyline

Walter is the chief of police in a small Ontario town that has its first murder victim, an attractive young woman who is found naked on the shores of the nearby lake. The woman isn't local and while the Ontario Provincial Police have taken the lead in the investigation, Walter assists where he can. The town is mostly a close-knit Mennonite community and Walter has recently returned to his church. He is also trying to deal with his own temper that led to a violent incident some months before. As the young woman is identified, it becomes apparent that Walter's former love interest may be lying. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence, disturbing images, a scene of sexuality, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

22 September 2011 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Small Town Murder Scenes  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,825 (USA) (3 June 2011)

Gross:

$30,858 (USA) (12 August 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jackie Burroughs final film. See more »

Goofs

In the credit for the song "Here Comes the Comet," written is misspelled as "wriiten." See more »

Connections

References CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

What A Friend We Have In Jesus
Lyrics by Joseph M. Scriven and music by Charles Crozat Converse
Performed by the congregation
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User Reviews

 
brilliant acting, thoughtful screenplay, effective film
12 February 2012 | by (United State) – See all my reviews

Recommended for watchers that appreciate the fine enactment of a well-crafted screenplay. Direction also very good. All the actors had their moments, and some were indeed memorable: I shall always remember the look between Rita and Steve at the end when Steve is in the back of the police vehicle. Let's just say brilliant acting, direction, and camera-work must culminate to capture something that good. Of course, one will need to watch what comes before to reach that point. The pace of the movie is deliberate, and dialog is often exchanged haltingly, especially from our main man, Walter (Peter Stormare depicts him from the inside out -- excellent all the way through; also loved the lingering accent, which fits Walter perfectly). Music and biblical quotes were a bit jangling, I must agree, as many other reviewers have noted. The quotes were more of a problem than the music for me, because I have a problem with quotes in general. As a viewer, I don't need to be told what a section of movie is going to be about. That's a bit of an insult, in fact. Anyway, take the quotes out and the movie would have been just as watchable from my perspective. Music -- OK, it adds atmosphere, though again I probably would have enjoyed the movie just as much without it. Reminiscent of another Mennonite-centric film I saw directed by Carlos Reygadas in Mexico, Silent Night, though that was brilliant in a very different way.

To recap, here, "Small Town Murder Songs" is a title that describes the movie literally; the acting, screenplay, and direction make this a watchable film, especially for the contemplative viewer.


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