End of Watch (Review)

Published on September 21st, 2012

Grade: A –

New cop drama, End of Watch, rolls into theaters this weekend. It’s a found footage style film starring Jake Gyllenhaal & Michael Pena. The film is written and directed by David Ayer who’s known for films like Training Day.

We get to follow officers Zavala and Taylor during their day to day on and off the job over the course of about a year. The two are some of their districts hot shots, but it’s only a matter of time before their flashy style forces them into a sticky situation.

I don’t want to give anything away so I’m not really going to talk anymore about the films synopsis. I found myself really enjoying the movie. I was a little worried about the crazy camera work being too distracting, but most of the time it wasn’t too bad. There were a couple scenes with body cameras that were a little all over the place, but it still wasn’t enough to make me dislike the movie. I guess watching so many episodes of Cops paid off.

I thought the plot was solid and the actors were solid. It has to be a challenge to make scenes shot with a found footage style look that natural. Proof of that is the less seasoned actors in the “cartel” who come off a little ridiculous.

I also wasn’t expecting the film to be as funny as it was. I don’t think it would have been if they had cast it different. Gyllenhaal is at the top of his game and Pena who’s making a move to be a leading man really gets to shine as well. The biggest scene stealer in the movie, however, is Anna Kendrick all the way. It’s like watching our generations Julia Roberts in the making.

This movie is by far worth your time. It’s got it all from Action to Drama and a little bit of Comedy thrown in to lighten the mood. It will change the way you look at police officers and will tug at your heart strings. Go see it, it’s one of my favorites so far this year.

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