End of Watch in Theaters this Weekend

Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña star as Los Angeles police officers patrolling the streets of south central Los Angeles, known to be city’s meanest, in End of Watch. At first, some viewers may not want to spend the time and/or money on another movie with cops and the bad guys, or cops that are buds. Believe me, it is so much more with these two talented actors who perform as officers Brian Taylor and Mike Zavala Viewers will leave the theater feeling fully entertained and experiencing both laughter and sadness. It is not meant to be a comedy, but the two have a well written script by David Ayers (who also directs) that weaves in some great lines between the two friends on the force and off. They do a great job delivering the comedic as well as the dramatic lines from the intense scenes of gangs, drugs and death. Some scenes are still with me despite having seen the film a few weeks ago.

I have no doubt that many will walk away with a mixture of feelings from the action/drama script by Ayers, but those who are fans of his other scripts for the films The Fast and the Furious, Training Day (2001), Dark Blue, S.W.A.T. and Harsh Times will no doubt be ready for September 21st when End of Watch opens. It does have an R MPAA Rating and rightfully so with the extremely tough scenes of violence; much like his prior films. It is hard to watch, but Ayers does not shy away from what is out there.

America Ferrera has a supporting role performing as a female cop who goes by her last name Orozco, opposite Gyllenhaal and Pena. Ferrara’s character, who goes by her last name Orozco, will be a main supporting role. Anna Kendrick is Janet, Gyllenhaal’s love interest, turned wife and they have good chemistry together. Natalie Martinez is Gabby, wife to Officer Zavala, and they too perform well together as if they had known each other forever. In the film, the viewer learns plenty about the couples.

End of Watch is a powerful story of family, friendship, love, honor and courage. Giving the story a gripping, first-person immediacy, the action unfolds entirely through footage from the handheld HD cameras of the police officers, gang members, surveillance cameras, and citizens caught in the line of fire to create a riveting portrait of the city’s most dangerous corners, the cops who risk their lives there every day, and the price they and their families are forced to pay.

Liz Lopez

Rating B+

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