Thousands of years ago there was a great war between the warriors of light and the warriors of dark. Seeing that the two sides were evenly matched, a truce was formed. Now, in present day Moscow the truce is about to be broken. There is an age old prophecy that a young other will emerge and when he does, the truce will be broken and the war will continue. This time, whichever side the chosen one chooses, will be the side that comes out victorious.
Our hero of the film is Anton Gorodetsky, or perhaps he should be called our anti-hero. Anton is a light other but with a bit of darkness in him. When Anton became an “other” he had met a witch and asked her to kill an unborn child that was in his wife’s womb. This act awakened something inside of Anton and he could no longer live as a normal human. He became a seer. When Anton goes on a mission to follow a young boy, Yegor, he bumps into Svetlana, a woman who is cursed. Svetlana has a vortex around her that will end life on Earth as we know it.
I remember seeing a trailer for this in the summer of 2005 and found it very intriguing. I couldn’t wait to see it, but the release date kept on getting pushed back. When it finally did go to theaters, it was a very limited release. Finally, the movie is out on DVD and everyone will get the chance to see this masterpiece. Night Watch has a style all its own. The visuals carry the film with a lot of nods to the likes of The Matrix. However, when watching both this film and the sequel Day Watch, I couldn’t help but think of Ghostbusters.
Night Watch is an excellent film from Russia. The actors do a remarkable job with what they’re given. Konstantin Khabensky plays the role of Anton perfectly as our hero who kind of stumbles around and makes mistakes. However, he does an even better job in the sequel, Day Watch, but that’s a different review.
The cinematography in this film is amazing, and it’s hard to believe this was shot on a low, by Hollywood’s standards, budget. The film has a style all of its own that you would just have to see for yourself to experience it. Night Watch is a movie that should have been released theatrically here in the states. The only reason it more than likely wasn’t is because it is a subtitled movie. However, the DVD does come with an English translated version of the film, but you lose so much when you watch it dubbed. The film is far better with English Subtitles instead of dubbing.
Overall, I would highly recommend giving Night Watch a chance. The movie met my expectations and far surpassed them. This is a great movie and should definitely become a Russian classic. When this movie ends, you’ll want to know what happens next. Luckily, Day Watch is already out on DVD. You may wonder how they’ll be able to surpass this film, and as great as Night Watch is, Day Watch is even better. This is one trilogy I am definitely enjoying.