Tuesday, February 5, 2013

End of Watch

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!


  End of Watch – 5 out of 5

When I first saw the trailer for this one—wait? What trailer, you ask? Why this one…



When I first saw that, I called it out as a renter and not one I would take out the loan required to now see movies in the theaters with. However, I regret that decision because this movie went beyond my expectations.

Like I didn't expect the 3 hour freestyle from Jake Gyllenhaal.

"Camera is on...look tough...fight urge to pick nose..."
Shot documentary-style, End of Watch is about two patrol cops; Brian Taylor (played by the prettier of the two Gyllenhaals; Jake Gyllenhaal) and Mike Zavala (Michael Peña), who stumble upon a human trafficking ring that ultimately puts them on a cartel’s shit list—no, that’s not a list of people the cartel wants to take a dump on but rather people they want to kill…kinda like a hit list…actually, in retrospect, I should have just said hit list.

Pointless screencap of the sun.

That baby is only 3 days away from retirement...
It's also too old for this shit.
End of Watch is about as raw and as real as a film can get. With the documentary-style the film was made in and the fact that the two officers have a camera attached to their persons or are seen with camcorders in hand has the potential to mean the film will put all it’s faith in the gimmick telling the story (like pretty much every “found footage” horror film made in America) however, the incredible improvised interactions between Peña and Gyllenhaal quickly sucked me into the film and I stopped seeing two actors play cops but what looked like two real cops being filmed for a non-Honey Boo Boo related reality show…possible a show about police officers of the law…maybe with a theme song that has a reggae sound and talks about bad boys and what they’re gonna do…I know, they could call it You Have the Right to Remain Silent!

"You have the right to remain silent--watch you gonna do, watch you gonna do
when they come for you..."


The strong and frighteningly realistic performances by the film’s two stars added to the real life troubles of being a police officer and juggling starting a family and being an officer of the law aspects of the story—especially one that is marked for death—really makes for an emotionally powerful film that ends with a moment that is scientifically proven to be impossible to not cry to while watching.

"Let's document the douchy style I wear my sunglasses when they are not in use..."
"And when they probably should be."


"Guys, is there something in my eye?  It feels like there
is something in my eye."
The film has a simple premise but it’s displayed in a creative way that manages to make the film look less like a work of fiction and look like an actual documentary. The plot jumps seemingly haphazardly through the lives of the two officers and their work in law enforcement but it all comes together in an effort to not only make the viewer feel a part of their lives but feel involved in their work. There’s really not much else that can be said about the film other than it far exceeded what I anticipated. I didn’t realize how realistic it would feel nor did I realize how I would be sucked into the story and characters the way I was. End of Watch is one of those rare films that knows how to use elements of the “found footage” genre and documentary-style film making and use it to its full potential and not just a gimmick to get asses in the seats of the theater.

"Jake?  Jake, get the camera away from crotch level...please?"

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