Sunday, January 15, 2012

Day Watch (2006)

Before I talk about this sequel to yesterday's Nightwatch, let me say first and foremost do not even think of viewing this movie unless you've seen the that film first. Simply put this movie just starts and goes, assuming that you've seen the first film. There are no reintroductions, just forward motion so be prepared, see Nightwatch.

Picking up some time after Nightwatch ends this film concerns two parallel stories Anton's search for a means of righting all that has gone wrong since he joined the Watch, and his framing for the murder of one of the Day Watch. The two things are not, of course, that far apart as everyone soon finds out.

This is epic story telling and it covers a great deal of ground. Do not blink or go to the bathroom with out being able to pause this since this moves like the wind. Unfortunately even with close attention a good deal of the plot is going to be clouded. There are lots of characters, lots of plot points many carried over from the first film (which in retrospect I should have re-watched before I dove into this film). You can fee the film's origins as a novel bleeding off the screen giving this version of Moscow a very real sense of place.

The action and craftsmanship of this film is almost without equal. The set pieces are spectacular, there are things in this movie to make your jaw drop open (the influx of American money can be seen on the screen in sequences that top the first film). The cast is amazing, creating some really good guys and some vile bad ones. Its first rate all around.

I really did like this film a great deal, though I am a tad disappointed. I don't know whether its the fact that the story is too big for its two and a half running time, or if its the fact that it doesn't go where I expected it to go. I know I'm going to have to see it again, preferably when I can see this not long after the first film (something I haven't done yet despite seeing this film a couple of times).

If you saw and liked the first film see this. If you weren't crazy about the first film you still may want to try it. But if you haven't seen the first film see that first.

(I should also point out that like the first film there are differences between versions. I have not explored them enough to tell you what they are, only beware that what every English version you see is going to play slightly different than any other one)

1 comment:

  1. I saw Night Watch at the cinema years ago and loved it. I have the DVD and your review makes me want to watch it again, soon. I loved its understated cool, gritty-ness, and as you say, didn't over-explain everything. Brilliant.

    Day Watch I felt was a bit over-bloated and lost a lot of the mythology that Night Watch had set up. I felt that everything in Night Watch made sense within itself, then suddenly in Day Watch there's a woman who can drive a car up the side of a building! I wanted to love it as much as the first film, but felt a bit let down by it. I haven't seen it since it was first released here in the UK, maybe I should give it another chance.