End of Watch Movie Reviews

End of Watch

End of Watch

Release Date: Sep 21, 2012

Genre: Action/AdventureDrama

Rating: (R)

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User reviews on End of Watch

  • 5
    I liked this movie a lot, mostly because of the fantastic performances given by the cast. I love everything Anna Kendrick ever did, ever since I saw her in that amazing movie Up in the Air. I wish Hollywood would give her more substantial roles since she's one of the best and most underused actresses. She plays the best friend of her cop boyfriend's partner's wife (does that make sense?) and yet she doesn't get enough screen time to really develop her character. Jake Gyllenhaal is quite good in his role, though he kind of lays it on thick as he tries to be more innocent than he should be. I think it's funny that people find him too cute in these roles when he usually plays offbeat characters or guys that just don't know what's going on. Michael Pena is amazing too, and I hope people really stand up and take notice of his amazing performance. A all the way!
  • 5
    Cop movies are a tough genre to execute, not only in the fully macho sense of the word, but in the manner that they can be either too tedious or too preachy as they depict lives affected (and frequently ruined) by law breaking, violence, and a lust for power. (Check out the new Dredd for a superficial but foreboding spin on what it means to be law enforcement, judge, jury, and executioner). It is with a deep sense of relief, then, that I can pronounce End of Watch as one of the best cop movies to have emerged from the Hollywood stables in a long, long time. This is a movie that is self-aware but never overly conscious of what it is or where it is going.

    The plot details the daily battles and relationship of two California officers, Zavala (Michael Pena) and Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal), whose daily beat is to police a region of Southern California with a largley immigrant Latino population which lives under the shadow of Mexican drug cartels. (Note to Hollywood writers: we get it – Mexican drug cartels are a danger, but please give the Latinos something else to be bothered by. The “Papers Please” law in Arizona is much more sinister). The story follows a relatively familiar route of buddy-and-cop movies with subplots that involve Zavala’s wife (Natalie Martinez) and Taylor’s girlfriend (Anna Kendrick). But mostly, the fearless twosome spend their days playing detective as they try to piece together who (or what) is behind the many crimes in their district.

    To be sure, this is a movie, and as such there are far too many gun duels and car chases for one pair of cops to possibly encounter, but we suspend disbelief because the movie works so well at depicting not only the relationship between Zavala and Taylor, but how being a police officer affects every other facet and relationship of an officer’s life. They live and breathe the slow murmur of waiting violence and disruption, only to find their lives upended and destroyed by the communities that they live to protect. It’s a thankless and difficult job, and few can imagine why anyone would want to make their livelihood this way.

    The performances are excellent, especially Michale Pena as Zavala, who plays his part with the right mixture of muscle and vulnerability. Gyllenhaal is mercifully restrained in his role, toning down his typical ‘boy-in-a-man’s-body’ act to give a truly nuanced and layered performance. Both of their portrayals really make this movie soar.
  • 5
    I'm generally not a big fan of cop dramas, but this one is an out-and-out winner. There is only so much cop movies can show us about what it's like to be a cop- inevitably these movies become about how cops are undervalued as heroes or how they succ**b to the power when they think that they have the law in their hands. The movie goes where you kind of expect all movies out these days to go when it comes to law and order around the Mexicali border - straight to drug cartels and mexican gangs terorrizing the innocents in a Latino community in the states. The relationship that is depicted between the two cops is so strong that you feel like they are soul mates instead of just beat partners. Jake Gyllenhaal is really good, but Michael Pena is FANTASTIC and I hope he gets an Oscar nod for his superb performance. Really, truly fantastic.

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