Dave White
Night Watch Review

Dave's Rating:


… most creatively subtitled …

Who's in It: Konstantin Khabensky, Vladimir Menshov, Valeri Zolotukhin

The Basics: The whole world (a k a Russia) is involved in an unseen battle between Dark Ones — vampires, witches, shape-shifters and sorcerers — and the members of the Night Watch, who are the vampire KGB. Sort of. And then there's this ancient prophecy foretelling the arrival of the Great One, who will end the battle. So the Great One shows up, and he has to pick a side. Which one will it be? I'm not telling.

What's the Deal? It's in Russian. So you're going to be reading it. But it's the most creatively subtitled movie you'll ever see. Its flashy, "look at me!" subtitling tricks you into reading the text when all you really want to do is watch all the freaky camera tricks. Good thing they don't get totally bogged down with dialogue-heavy stuff, because there are a lot of the freaky camera tricks. In fact, there's so much of that going on that this movie barely makes any sense.

In Defense of the "Trip" Movie: OK, yes, I just said it made no sense. And it doesn't. But don't let that dissuade you from seeing it. There's a logic to movies like this, it's just not a narrative one. You let it be all self-serious and heavy and dark, while you breeze through it, digging the swirly, visual ride. Make sure you have candy to eat.

Take That, Lord of the Rings: Apparently, no one goes to see Russian movies in Russia; until this movie came along, no homegrown film had ever broken $2 million at the box office. This one made $16 million, more than LotR and Spider-Man 2.

Best Scene: The part where they all wind up at a huge stadium concert by what can only be described as Russian Spice Girls.


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