Based on the 2014 short Bag Man, science fiction/action film Kin is a flawed but entertaining film that offers notable performances from both newcomer and veteran actors.
The film follows Elijah “Eli” Solinski (played by Myles Truitt), a 14-year-old living in Detroit, Michigan with his gruff taskmaster of an adoptive father, Hal (played by Dennis Quaid). While scavenging at an old and abandoned building for copper wire to sell, Eli discovers a post-fight scene with multiple bodies. He takes a strange weapon home and stumbles onto a spat between Hal and his biological son, Jimmy (played by Jack Reynor).
Jimmy, a convicted felon who is fresh out of prison, owes $60,000 in protection money to local crime lord Taylor Balik (played by James Franco). Jimmy wants to take money from the safe at the construction company where Hal works; Hal refuses to help. The next night, Hal catches Jimmy and Taylor stealing from the safe. A gunfight ensues, Hal is killed, Jimmy kills Taylor’s brother in the ensuing scuffle, and flees with the money. The rest of the movie centers on Jimmy and Eli fleeing the murderous Taylor via a cross-country trek to Lake Tahoe. Eli brings his newfound toy with him and uses it to get out of several dangerous situations along the way.
Overall, I enjoyed myself. Kin has decent action scenes and the performances from Truitt and Franco were particularly good. The film’s surprise ending, however, felt abrupt and confusing as all get out. I won’t spoil too much except that Michael B. Jordan, of Black Panther fame, makes a surprise cameo appearance. Props to the filmmakers for stirring things up, if nothing else. Hopefully, Jonathan and Josh Baker end up doing a sequel; there are a number of loose ends to tie up.
I give Kin 2 ½ stars.