If you know me, you know that I’ve lost faith in movies that use the”handheld camera” style of filming. Chronicle was the best execution of the method, but the rest fell flat. But now we have End of Watch, and I’ve added it up there with Chronicle.
The three key points to this movie are the acting, the script, and the filming.
This movie works because we love Gyllenhaal and Peña. Their chemistry is some of the best I’ve seen in any movie in a long time. There is a lot of aggression towards cops nowadays, so making them likable is a tedious tasks. I’m not a cop hater, but if I were, I would be unable to resist these two officers. They work so well together on screen.
The police force as a whole was believable, and meshed well as a squad. On the opposite side of the coin, you loathe the gang members that the officers face. The movie makes you feel that. You seriously loathe them. You want the disgusting criminals to get busted.
I was also blown by Gyllenhaal’s love interest, played by Anna Kendrick. She was a bright light every time she was on screen, and her chemistry with Gyllenhaal felt very real. This woman is gorgeous, by the way. That’s always a plus.
So it’s clear that the acting was top notch, and that is greatly in part due to the script. The way that everybody interacts with one another feels very natural. People don’t simply exchange dialogue to advance the story in an A-B-conversation kind of way. People talk to talk, and that’s exactly how life is. This dialogue and manner of interaction wasn’t stale, however. It was interesting to see these characters exchange words.
The movie is often humorous, true to reality.
The filming was right on. The documentary style worked because it wasn’t the focus of the film. Sure, it’s explained why and how things are being filmed, but after that, the cameras aren’t addressed. Not everything is filmed by characters, and I couldn’t care less. The cameras captured the movie in a very raw way, and it brought us closer to the characters in a way that is hard to do.
Over all, End of Watch is a very strong T-Bone. I highly recommend it.