Daywatch. Movie review by Ester Molayeme.
Based on the science fiction novel by Sergei Lukyanenko and Vladimir Vasiliev, this second of the trilogy follows the highly successful Night Watch (Nochnoi Dozor), which opened in Russia in 2004 and grossed over $16 millions in revenues at the Russian box office, exceeding Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and Spider-Man 2.
The Russian smash-hit Day Watch is the record grossing film in post-Soviet history, generating over $30 million.
Dusk Watch, the third of the trilogy, is in the works.
Set in Moscow of today, Day Watch revolves around the conflict between the forces of Light and Darkness, equally strong opponents co-existing in a tense truce.
Each force patrols the other to enforce the pact. While Night Watch monitors the Dark Others, Day Watch keeps track of the activity of the Light Others. The Others consist of ordinary looking people possessing supernatural powers. This highly regulated world requires vampires to be licensed to kill. Witches and warlocks must receive authorization to work.
"What makes this unconventional sci-fi so spectacular is its creative visuals. Very engaging is the action through wild chases, powerful explosions, and hair-raising stunts in different historical epochs." - Ester Molayeme
Only Others are able to enter the different but parallel life dimension known as the Gloom, and only Great Others are able to resolve the conflicts that arise between the forces.
Anton Gorodetsky (Konstantin Khabensky), a member of Night Watch, is caught in the middle of the two forces. His son, Egor (Dima Martynov), joined the ranks of the Dark Others, while Svetlana (Maria Poroshina), Anton's trainee and romantic interest, is with the Light Ones.
Zavulon (Victor Verzhbitskiy), the Dark Others’ leader, attempts to trigger a war by accusing Anton of killing a Dark Other. Things get increasingly complicated, and only the mystical Chalk of Fate, lost hundreds of years ago, can rewrite destiny.
As in Night Watch, Anton Gorodetsky is a father "who lost his son, feels terribly guilty, and then spends his life trying to solve this problem that is plaguing his conscience" explains director-writer Timur Bekmambetov. Emotionally and viscerally exciting, it is "a movie about a man's moral breakdown and the forces of Light and Darkness fighting for his soul" states producer Anatoly Maximov.
What makes this unconventional sci-fi so spectacular is its creative visuals. Very engaging is the action through wild chases, powerful explosions, and hair-raising stunts in different historical epochs.
The sequel has most of the same characters. Konstantin Khabensky, one of Russia's most popular actors, portrays a natural and believable character, one that people can relate to. In the role of Alisa, the Russian pop star and media icon Zhanna Friske has a fascinating car scene. Galina Tyunina, as Olga, is a Night Watch shape-shifting member.
Day Watch is brighter in tone and color, has more character development, humor, and is easier to follow than Night Watch.
The complex intricate plots may require multiple viewing for a full grasp. Nevertheless, the movie stands out in its creativity, action, state of the art visual effects, and entertainment, delivering a satisfying conclusion.