Directed and written by Henry Dunham, The Standoff At Sparrow Creek is produced by Cinestate and distributed by RLJ Entertainment. It saw a limited release in 2018 and a wider release in 2019.
Ex-cop-turned-militia member Gannon (James Badge Dale) returns to his trailer after a day of hunting, when suddenly he hears gunfire. After turning on his police scanner, he hears reports of an active shooter at a funeral. He pulls out a burner phone and contacts the other members of his militia. After gathering together, the seven decide to cover their tracks, especially after it comes to life that it was the funeral of a cop. After opening up their armory, they realize that one of their rifles is missing.
One of them committed the mass shooting, but no one is confessing. Their leader Hubbel (Gene Jones) turns to Gannon for his skills at interrogation to try to determine which one of them did it. Tension mounts as they begin to turn on one another as the authorities seem to be hot on their trail.
This was one of the most suspenseful films I have seen in a long time. You can feel the tension building as each member of this isolated group begin to question each other’s motives, even wondering if they should give up one of their own just to keep the police off their back. You can feel the character’s anger, suspicion, and panic.
While the production value of the movie is low, it matches with the grittiness of the film, adding to the pulse-pounding suspense as you watch. I appreciated the depth the characters were given. Each one of them has a rough past, but the film does not justify the violence that one of them allegedly committed, also avoiding the politics of the characters. It gives more focus on their desire for vengeance at a system they feel failed them.
I also want to praise actor James Badge Dale. His role as Gannon keeps the film flowing together. While the rest of the cast is exemplary, he steals the show with an intensity as he tries to finger a suspect for the situation.
Bottom line, this is an unflashy, tension infused thriller that will have you questioning every moment and the motives of every character. Director Dunham crafts a story that will have you on the edge of your seat for each moment.
FAVORITE QUOTE: Why didn’t you tell me?
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Brief Strong foul language, Disturbing content, Some violence
Check out the trailer below:
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