Dwayne, a mechanic who assists his completely paralyzed father, dreams to move from the little Cut Bank to some big city, together with his girlfriend Cassandra.While he and Cassandra are recording a video in preparation for Cassandra's upcoming performance in "Miss Cut Bank", the local beauty pageant, they see and record the homicide of the local mail carrier, George Wits. From there, we will discover some interesting truths about Cut Bank, some of its inhabitants and the homicide.
This film provides examples of:
- Badass Bookworm: Derby Milton. Non only he has the physique du role, but one minor character explicitly states that he remembers him as being very intelligent. And he proves his intelligence being for almost the whole movie a step ahead of everyone in understanding what happened and who is involved.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Dwayne's father was a colleague and a sort of a friend of Derby. Dwayne listens to Derby's account without insulting or interrupting him. Both Dwayne and Cassandra are collaborative and help him to find what he is searching for. And at the climax Derby basically tells this, making clear he is going to let them live. So bad that then he notices that Dwayne wasn't so collaborative, after all.
- Beneath the Mask: George makes a clear point that the smiles and kindness he distributes while he is working are just a facade.
- Determinator: Derby. Don't get between him and his lunchbox.
- Glory Days: The barwoman seems to live on this. She almost always talks about the time when she won the "Miss Cut Bank" contest. And she even says to Cassandra that, if she wins, it will be the most important day of her life. She clearly was speaking of herself.
- Mugging the Monster: Match, George and a barman think they can insult Derby and ignore his requests or that he has to respond to them "or else". They are so wrong.
- Murder by Inaction: Dwayne almost pulls this on his own father, when the life support machine starts to malfunction. But after some seconds, he changes his mind.
- Not Distracted by the Sexy: The barwoman, who is a former Miss Cut Bank, and still a quite hot MILF, seems perfectly willing to hit on Derby (who, honestly, is not particularly good looking, or smelling, according to a former minor character). He completely ignores her. Strangely enough, for such an instance, she seems to totally respect him even after that, firstly suggesting to the barman that he must leave Derby alone (advice that the barman ignores, but that he soon has to understand it was a good one) and later praising to Dwayne, in clear admiration, the way Derby dealt with the barman.
- Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: Derby Milton. Almost everyone seems to think he was dead. He was just living isolated, disgusted by humanity.
- Start of Darkness: Derby narrates his one. While it is clear that he probably was not really stable to start with, it is clear that he was traumatized by having to kill a female bear and her two cubs to preserve the business of the natural park. Then it was just a matter of occasion: namely, a poacher killing one of the animals Derby was trying to protect; the same poacher is presumably the embalmed dude in Derby's masterwork.
- Underestimating Badassery: A lot of people seem to underestimate what Derby can do, trying to face him physically. It usually ends bad for them.
- What You Are in the Dark: We can see this applied to Dwayne. See Murder by Inaction a few lines above.