Friday, July 28, 2006

Nightwatch (Nochnoy Dozor)

I pulled this one off of the shelf at Movie Starz Video and was not dissapointed with the selection at all! When I first started the movie, something wasn't right. I knew this was a russian film, but it was obviously dubbed. Now, I hate watching dubbed movies. In fact, in most instances I simply refuse to watch a dubbed movie. People that prefer dubbed flicks are the same people that smother a perfectly good steak with A1 sauce. Ok, so once I figured out that the russian version with english subtitles was on the reverse side of the DVD, everthing was gravy. This is one of the more bizarre movies I've seen in recent years. The storyline isn't much different than a lot of vampire films out there: a centuries long battle between light and dark-side 'Others' (vampires, shapeshifters, etc) has been raging. There is a truce that has been going on for the last few centuries. It is prophesied that one will come along that will shift the balance, destroy the truce, and take out the other side. Whichever side the powerful 'Other' chooses (according to the prophesy), that side will be triumphant. The beauty of 'Nightwatch' is not in the story, but how it unfolds. The gore was superb- grotesque, believable and without a hint of cg (rare for horror these days). I was very impressed with one particular scene in which a shapeshifter transforms from an owl into a nubile young woman. It was brutal, raw, painful and uncomfortable to watch. The transformation was reminescent of the werewolf change-over from 'An American Werewolf in London', while utilizing modern-day effects. 'Nightwatch' tugs from several emotional angles including friendship, romance (between vampire and human), and paternal/maternal bonds, while putting on display the difficult choices that confront our conscience in the eternal battle between good and evil (light and dark). There is also a nice climactic plot twist. Excellent film- two paws way up!


Blogger Joseph B. said...

So you're the one I hear screaming every time I put A1 sauce on my steak huh? I just did that on Tuesday, although I guess I get what I deserve if I order (and expect) a "good" steak from Applebees.

I watched Nightwatch a couple weeks back and really enjoyed it. I think this is the first in a trilogy. The second has already been filmed and will be making the festival rounds later this year. Unfortunately, my copy didn't have a Russian flip side, so I had to settle for the crappy dubbed version. Nothing hotter than vampire women though!

7:10 PM  

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