Sadism and masochism beneath a veneer of revenge. Lou Ford is a mild-mannered sheriff's deputy in a Texas oil town in the mid 1950's. His boss sends him to roust a prostitute living in a rural house. She slaps him; he hits her, then, after daily sex for the next few weeks, he decides it's love. She's devoted to him and becomes his pawn in a revenge plot she thinks is to shakedown the son of Chester Conway, the town's wealthy king of construction. Lou has a different plan, and bodies pile up as murder leads to murder. The district attorney suspects Lou, and Conway may have an inkling, but Lou stays cool. Is love, or at least peace, in the cards?Written by
When Lou Ford chases the extortionist down the street, the extortionist runs past a modern Peterbilt truck. See more »
Sheriff Bob Maples:
Name of Joyce Lakeland. Lives about four or five miles out on Derrick Road past the old Branch place.
Oh, I know the old Branch place. She a hustling lady, Bob?
Sheriff Bob Maples:
Well, I guess so, but she's - she's been pretty decent about it.
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This takes place in the 1950s and was adapted from a novel published in 1952. Lou Ford (Casey Affleck) is the sheriff of a small southern town called Central City. Everybody likes him and he seems like a quiet, laid-back kind of guy--but something inside him makes him kill people. He kills a woman and a guy and sets it up to look like a double murder...but people suspect something is up and Lou finds himself slowly getting sucked into being accused.
A combination of a character study and film noir. Most of the film is narrated by Ford so you're able to find out what he's thinking and why he's doing it. There are no clear answers why he kills but there are plenty of clues. It's film noir but most of it takes place on bright sunshiny days--clearly at odds with the dark tone of the film. The production design is great--this does look like the 1950s. There is violence and it's VERY sick and disturbing but there's not a lot of it. But when it does hit it's brutal. There's plenty of sex also (some of it is S&M) but it's not explicit--most of it is shot from the chest up. Affleck is incredible in his role. He acts and looks like such a sweet nice guy that when the violence erupts it's shocking. Seriously--this is one of THE best performances of 2010. Also the supporting roles are full of talented actors--Jessica Alba (OK--she's NOT talented but she's OK here), Kate Hudson, Ned Beatty, Elias Koteas and Simon Baker.
In the negative the film is a little too long--I found the last 20 minutes or so very anti-climatic. Also Affleck's accent was a problem. He adopts a heavy southern accent here--and I had trouble making out some of his lines! I had to keep replaying certain scenes because I couldn't figure out what he was saying! Still I found this fascinating but disturbing. The graphic violence and sex might be too much for some people but, if you can handle that, I recommend this movie. I give it an 8.
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