Written by: Michael Den Boer on July 13th, 2009
Release Date: USA, 2008
Production Company: Cacchiotti Productions
Approximate running time: 81 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Director: Jason Baustin
Writers: Jaymes Camery, Ben Solenberger
Cinematography: Jason R. Simmons
Cast: Paul Bailey, Ben Solenberger, Jacqueline Turner, Jason Simmons, Jaymes Camery, David L. Buckler, Chris Kennedy
Cowboy Killer is the feature film directorial debut of Jason Baustin, who also directed the short film Change is Coming and he also worked as a cinematographer on the film The Life I Lived. The screenplay for Cowboy Killer was co-written by Ben Solenberger who directed the film The Life I Lived and he even has a prominent role in Cowboy Killer in which he is cast in the role of Ernie Murray a serial killer who befriends Roy Thompson aka The Cowboy Killer.
The plot for Cowboy Killer revolves around a character named Roy Thompson who since his childhood has been obsessed with cowboys. Roy is a delusional man who truly believes that he is helping others when in reality he kills everyone who objects to his brand of kindness. This film is populated with an abundance of colorful characters like inept law enforcement who spend more time at the strip clubs then actually doing their job, a pair of cable guys whose detective skills are not much sharper then that of the real law enforcement in this film and two drunks who try to help the police catch the Cowboy Killer. In true Wild West fashion the plot builds up to a final in which the town folks take on the Cowboy Killer the end result is a very satisfying conclusion.
Sure the film is filled with stereo type redneck characters and the tongue and cheek humor that is prevalent throughout does at times come close to over stepping the boundaries of good taste. These are also the two things make this film so damn enjoyable. All around the entire cast are pitch perfect in their respective roles with the standout performance coming from Paul Bailey in the role of Roy Thompson, The Cowboy Killer. His character also has a very cool line of dialog which he says before he kills his next victim, “You’re in for a damn treat”. While not as polished of a performance as Paul Bailey’s portrayal of the Cowboy Killer, Ben Solenberger’s characters Ernie Murray steals every scene he is in. Ultimately Cowboy Killer is one of those rare instances where a film flawlessly balances horror and comedy.