Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I have not really figured out what part of me takes such delight in the messy mulch that is Timur Bekmambetov's "Watch" trilogy. Perhaps it is the inherent 'Russian-ness' of the whole thing which gives it an aftertaste more palatable than the typical SFX-laden American blockbuster. (Yes kids, it's the dirty-Euro version of Underworld!) The first installment of the
trilogy, Nochnoy Dozor (aka The Night Watch) aimed for epic, introduced a lot of mythology and characters (many seemingly at random), and basically set up the stage to be paid off in the sequels.
Well, here at part two, a lot of charcters continue to be developed, but a lot more thrown into the mix to the point where you just go along with it, narrative be damned. For the first 80 or so minutes there is a lot of sound and fury, featuring the rogues gallery of warlocks, witches, shapeshifters and warlocks (some good, some bad and some in between) running around Moscow and Mongolia searching for, of all things, a piece of chalk (perhaps an even more innocuous item than a ring, further cementing the nickname of the trilogy as the 'Russian Lord of the Rings'). In the last half hour of the film, the narrative gets back on track with the first films prophecy/conflict and things begin to cohere. Of course, at this point, things are set up for the final chapter.

While there is bound to be confusion if you have not caught the first chapter, I would suggest that it really does not matter, you are either willing to go along with the unexplained character motivations and plot points or you are not. The Day Watch is a spectacular visual hodgepodge that may very well be the emperor's new clothes, but hey, the emperor is Russian, and thats good enough for me.

Come out and watch the music-video-esque CGI-enhanced mayhem Tuesday May 23. 8pm drinks. 8:30pm trailers and showtime.


Anonymous Marina said...

I'm excited to see this. I have a copy sitting on the DVD player for viewing and hope to get to it at some point this weekend.

5:25 p.m.  

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