In formerly repressive Soviet Union, vampires is so crazy! Is like whole country a battleground–between good and evil!
I should do all my posts in Yakov Smirnoff’s voice. So, like, Jeff and I saw Night Watch, which was kind of deliriously fun. I’m going to cautiously draw a comparison with Von Trier’s The Kingdom, because both films have a loopy laughing-gas good time reinvigorating some pretty standard cliches. (The caution is: no way no how does Watch approach Lars-ian lunacy. But it’s at least far afield from the somber darkness of much “horror/fantasy”.) Will it appeal to D&D players? You’ll have to ask Bruns, but for those of us who can’t tell this world-building mythos from that one, I heartily recommend it.
Three quick things, beyond the exhilirations of its hyper-plotted oddness:
1. The look of the film–from its frenetic but very fluid editing, to its skanky post-Soviet production aesthetic–is a kick in the eye; even as a fan of Jackson’s Rings trilogy, I am flat amazed at the richness of the settings and imagined universe here. (And I probably prefer its recognizable grunge to the archetypal Ardens and hells of Middle Earth.)
2. The lead is a find. World- and other-world-weary, he drags himself through action sequences as if barely able to raise his arms, and when he gets the snot smacked out of him, you feel the impact, short- and long-term. In other words, like the look, the lead grounds us in an everyday quality that anchors the overdetermined ambitions of its alternate-historical grand mythology.
3. I will see the sequels. Or at least the next one, and gladly–in fact, I’ll probably catch this one again, at least on dvd.