Sunday, July 8, 2007

A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma

(Day Watch. Fox Searchlight Pictures. 2007.)

Bug surprised me and took me to see Day Watch Friday night! I've been anxiously awaiting this movie after seeing Night Watch over a year ago.

Day Watch is the 2nd installment of a trilogy based on the immensely popular horror-fantasy Russian series written by Sergei Lukyanenko. The movies are based on Lukyanenko's books; however, Day Watch is a movie-sequel to Night Watch, not a translation of the novel-sequel, "Day Watch."

I was introduced to the trilogy when Night Watch had a limited release run over a year ago and was quite impressed, so I decided to check out the books. "Night Watch" was released here, translated in English, a few months after the movie's release. I was able to purchase "Day Watch" in April 2007. Day Watch had already played in theaters in Russia when Night Watch ran here in the US. NY and LA premiered Day Watch on June 1st. Friday night (July 6th) was the premier in Cleveland.

As for a quick and dirty gist of the books and movies, there is a sect of different people who have lived amongst us for centuries known as "Others." They have powers of various levels, be it vampiric, shapeshifting, telekinetic, etc. and are able to travel in different planes that are parallel to ours depending on their level.

During medieval times, a truce was struck between Gessar and Zabulon after much bloodshed, during the last war...which brings us to present day, where the Day Watch are the Dark Others, based in a posh office building, who monitor the Light Others for any transgressions that would be considered breaking the truce. The Night Watch are the Light Others, based in an electrical plant and play powerhouse employees, and monitor the Dark Others. The Inquisition is the neutral body that governs the judicial and executive process of any crime, especially crimes against humans.

Gessar and Zabulon are the leaders of the Night Watch and Day Watch, respectively. The movies and books lead you through the inner workings of the two Watches, the chess moves and back alley deals on each side.

The thread that mingles throughout is the relationship between the main character, Anton; his love interest, Sveta, a future Great Other; and his son (movies only), Yegor, as they are manipulated as pawns by both sides.

The books and the movies diverge quite a bit, but both are very exciting and colorfully written, if you are into horror-fantasy. Of course, I prefer the books much more, but the movies present themselves so playfully down to the stylistic subtitles that it makes me tingle, much like enjoying a guilty pleasure. Consider me an addict. I can't wait until my next dose of Twilight or Dusk Watch - in print and film!

- Cassaendra

2 deep thoughts:

Mjol 31 July, 2007 02:44  

One of these days I'll read the series. I almost bought Night Watch the other day, but I decided against it. Hehe, I just can't find the initiative to actually finish a book.

SicklyBug & Cassaendra 31 July, 2007 15:23  

Aww...well, it isn't exactly a short book, so I can understand...especially when you're trying to squeeze in time between games. ;) It was a [relatively] quick read though.

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