6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
As Scary as Any Horror Movie I've seen,
This review is from: End of Watch (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet) (Blu-ray)
Who needs the walking dead, malevolent entities or gruesome, face eating aliens when you have South Central L.A.?
Here's the scoop. Brian Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal) and his partner Mike Zavala (Michael Pena) run a black and white in South Central L.A.. Brian is former military and recording video of their day to day on the job. He's obviously too smart for the job and will probably move up to detective. He has a great relationship with his partner Zavala. They can rib each other endlessly without taking offence. Most days are run of the mill, but they run into some situations that are awful and terrifying. What makes these situations so horror filled is that they are true to life. One thread begins to unravel a sweater too large for them to handle and it leads to a violent conclusion.
What little I read of the movie before going in did not prepare me for what I was about to see. I expected more of a traditionally filmed narrative with a well written script and an A to B to C plot-line. Nope. What I got was all hand-held camera with nearly no plot-line at all. This is a slice o' lifer through and through. You do not feel as though you are watching a film. It's more as though you're with them on their daily routine. There is an immediacy to it all. You are seeing what they are seeing when they see it and at times it's unsettling. There are a lot of crazy, mean, degenerates out there that are drug heads, gang-bangers, and people who deal in the worst of businesses. These cops come across them in their day to day and you wonder how they keep their heads on straight. You come to love and respect these two as the movie rolls on. There were some nice touches as well. When you meet Gyllenhaal's girlfriend/fiance (Anna Kendrick) she's a hoot. She has a masters degree in fluid dynamics but she's not a stick in the mud. She gets down, and when the two of them perform their dance routine at their wedding, it's something to see.
I cannot say I'm the biggest fan of the police. I'm sure there is little doubt that some of the ills in society could not exist without their help. There are a lot of bad cops out there but here you get to see two guys who are just "on the job" and the stuff they have to put up with. I've gained a whole new respect for the good guys. There are some things that happen in the movie that run into the area of cliche, which is why I haven't given this the big 5 stars, but it has a tremendous amount of impact and will both frighten you and, at times, make your skin crawl. At a reported $7,000,000.00 budget the end far outweighs the dollars put in. If you're at all disposed to this kind of film, put this on your list. It's more than worth your time.