Jeff Nichols' feature debut is a beautifully shot film about the consequences and cycle of violence, with memorable performances, judicious editing and great use of music. Looking back now, one of the greatest pleasures is seeing the potential Nichols has promised here being fully realised in later works like Take Shelter and Midnight Special, as well as the influence the film has had on works such as Blue Ruin.
Erm... I liked the music? And the colour scheme was very interesting. But, I found Dennis Quaid's character endlessly irritating and the male posturing wearying. The central relationship is unconvincing at best, rapey at worst, and the story just doesn't grip in the way it should. The film garners momentum when John Goodman's character shows up, but it's largely too little too late.
A flawless, precision-tooled masterpiece, where every frame works perfectly. Unsentimental but profound and moving, it is suspenseful as any classsic Hitchcock, gripping from start to finish. I can see why it is sometimes sighted as one of the greatest films of all time.