end of watch

Sincere Sweet Mother Movie Review: End of Watch (#334)

When Wifesy and I watch a movie, it’s very serious business.  We are movie buffs and Netflix junkies.  Wifesy is the first person I’ve ever met who actually OWNS movies.  A huge collection of movies.  At first I thought it was ‘redunkulous,’ but then I realized much like a good song, if a story is good, you want to hear it / see it again.  Especially if there’s been some distance between the current viewing and the last time you watched it.  I had that experience with Tootsie recently.  Re-watched it and went, “Holy Shiznatch, I totally forgot Bill Murray was in this.”  It truly is like watching it for the first time, all over again.


I’m also obsessed with writers whenever something is really strong.  I watch a film that I find truly “different” from the constant muck out there and the first thing I want to do is check the credits for the writer.  That’s what happened to me this weekend with End of Watch.


End of Watch is a buddy-cop movie like no other.  And you know it from the second the film opens.  The first scene is a typical cop / bad guy car chase, but the camera pov is told from the cop car dashboard.


Basically, this movie took what Blair Witch Project TRIED to do and did it right.


I remember the hype leading up to Blair Witch.  I even remember waiting on a long line to get a ticket to the thing back when I was living in New York.  When I actually went and  saw the film, it was a huge let down.  I found the camera moves nauseating and the story thin.  Not so with End of Watch.  The BEST part of the film is the story and the perfectly told relationship between these two, brother-like, cops.


Honestly, you’d be hard pressed to find better dialogue anywhere else.  In my opinion, it’s pitch perfect.


Here’s an example:



I mean that is just GREAT dialogue.  It’s got everything.  It’s funny, it’s real, it shows you the true essence of the characters to the extent where you feel as if you’ve just been hit with a pie in the face.  It comes on that strong because it’s both direct AND visceral.


And that leads me to the second great point about this move — IT’S DIVERSE.


Really spot-on, diverse casting…just as Los Angeles really looks, so does the cast of this movie.


I read an interview with the writer/ director, David Ayer, after watching the film.  He talked about how the LAPD used to hire white, male, ex-Marines.  Almost exclusively.  So, the entire force looked just about the same.  Now they hire people who look more like the citizens they are policing and that has to be worth its weight in gold.  Plus, it makes for a FAR more interesting movie.


Take, for example, a small element of the movie that stuck out for me, but really was just a SMALL angle.  What it did, in my opinion, was it scored immense points for the story/ character/ and authenticity of the film.


American Ferrera has a bit part as a lady cop, who also happens to be a lesbian.  It’s not a central part of the film.  It’s mentioned and thrown away.  In fact, it’s not even mentioned.  We see her kiss a girl and that’s it.  What’s interesting is that her female counterpart, the right hand to the top gang leader, is also a ghetto-lesbian.  This is also thrown away.  She cruises a girl and that’s it.  It’s fascinating and does great service to showing how these two worlds are exact opposite sides of the same coin.



Something similar happens when Brian Taylor’s partner, Mike Pena, decides he’s going to “street fight” with a guy that insults him during their shift.  He takes his gun off and gives the guy a spanking.  In doing so, he gains street cred with the guy he fights and his partner, Brian, shares in his victory.  In the next scene, we see the top gang leader and one of his underlings go through something nearly exact in its “boys-bond-bloody” sentiment.  The underling is forced to “man up” and is rewarded with the leader’s praise, just as Mike was rewarded with Brian’s, post-fight.


Ayer talked about wanting to get Hollywood movies back to STORY and CHARACTER.  So, if you’re interested in that – this is a must see film.


Since most of us are writers here, it should.  :0


What about you?  Have you seen any recent stories that have blown you away in terms of story and/ or character?  What story-lines inspire you?



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40 thoughts on “Sincere Sweet Mother Movie Review: End of Watch (#334)

  1. House of Cards, on Netflix. I like anything but “Girlie flicks” and usually enjoy anything Michelle picks for us to watch. However, my favorites of all time – 1) The Year of Living Dangerously and 2) Oh Brother Where Art Thou? Obviously, soundtrack is paramount. And the one I’m most looking forward to…The Vagina Monologues with Rebecca “Sweet Mother” Donohue at a casino near me. (Don Rickles was in town for the last two days. Hell, I didn’t know he was still alive!)

  2. I’ve been wanting to see this movie, and the last two weekends, it’s been rented at our nearest Redboxes, so we haven’t been able to get it. Hopefully next week. And now I’m even more excited to see it. It it gets Sweet Momma’s approval, then it gets mine. 🙂

  3. I think last movie I watch (that I own) is Finding Nemo. That whole movie is a “Quotable Quote” so I won’t pick one.

    Last movie we watched at the cinema was Life of Pi. Cinamatically beautiful. I could enjoy it as I haven’t read the book.

    1. wifesy owns finding nemo… i dare not tell you how big of a disney collection she has even tho she’s in her 40s!!!! lmao. as for life of pi. i absolutely loved it and i loved the book as well. that’s rare for me to love both the movie and the book. they usually feck one up. wifesy didn’t like it as much, which i was really surprised by. she usually loves fantastical things… xoxo, sm

  4. Hubs bought this movie and has watched it countless times. It was shot in his area and he says it’s as close to capturing the nature of the job and the relationship between two partners as any movie has ever come (and let me tell you, he is a harsh critic of anything having to do with his profession). The conversation that you put up in this post is one of his favorites. That’s what it’s like in a patrol car. Great writing.

    1. it just seems SO authentic, so i totally buy that. he funny thing is that the cop-partner banter is very similar to comedians who like eachother… the pc goes right out the window, in the best way possible and i totally love that. such a great film. ur hubs sounds pretty great to me… 😉 sm

  5. Sweet Mother, we just got this device called Roku. (because we needed one more remote!) Now we get Netflix, Ted Talks, movie channels out the wazzoo, and much,much more streaming to our TV. It’s a commercial free junkie’s dream! http://www.roku.com/ if you wanna check it out.

      1. exactly. the only thing that might save me is the fact that it now takes three remotes to turn on the TV. I can’t stand that. of course, once it’s on…all I need is the Ro-krack controller! HA!

  6. I’m not a huge movie watcher any more but like Wifesy, I have a cabinet full of favourite movies from the past. Those movies are like my favourite books, always there, waiting for me like old friends.

    1. like old friends, indeed. when wifesy and i were long distance she watched them on loop. i think they made her feel less lonely. now that we live together, we’re always discovering new movies. tho, she made me watch defending your life the other day and i loved it… xo, sm

      1. Not drawing any parallels, but my ex used to love movies so we watched a lot more back then. The Daughter and I tend to watch Japanese anime with subtitles so we can hear the language.

  7. I LOVED this movie. Hubby and I watched this a couple of weeks ago. Not only was the writing superb but the relationship between these two cops rang so true to me. I read that they rode with LA cops for months to understand what being a partner means. It obviously worked. This is one I’d like to own. We are also those people who own a big movie collection and you’re right, there are just some flicks you want to see again.

    Argo is another excellent movie — with good writing, I think. And Searching for Sugar Man is a great documentary — if you’ve not seen it, you’d probably enjoy this, becks.

    1. argo was the bomb. i absolutely loved that movie. and sugarman is the nxt one in our netflix queue. i can’t wait to see it!! and i’m with you. the relationship just seemed so authentic and the writing superb in end of watch. and usually when they have crazy cam moves like they did in this one, they tend to substitute it for story like blair witch did, but not here. an a++ film. oxo, sm

  8. I rarely watch movies unless I can watch them in the comfort of my home, I simply cannot sit still that long. I do own movies, lots of them. Admittedly many of them are very old, from back when I was young and dumb but I still love them and still laugh (sometimes sing and scream) when watching them!

    Little Shop of Horrors
    Rocky Horror Picture Show
    Wizards (animated)
    Anything Flying Circus
    There there are some of the Clint Eastwood movies, don’t know why love them

    Then there is just my all time, laugh out loud: Me & Him
    Terrible premise, but each time I watch it I die.

    1. have you ever seen harold and maude, vals? it’s a bit dark, but i think you might like that one. it’s so easy to see how dvds and streaming killed movie theater business. it’s very fun to watch movies at home. i’m definitely going to check out some of your faves too… xoxo, sm

      1. I have, I like that one though it isn’t in my collection. You are right though, I tend to like the dark.

        Warning: Me and Him, a man’s penis takes over (when doesn’t it) and talks to him. Real conversations, to him and to other penises in the room. Every time I watch it I laugh hysterically. I don’t know why I think this is funny but that I can imagine it is true.

  9. Being honest, have never heard of this movie until now, but I know what’s on my list for the week (assuming its on streaming Netflix too). Due to the abundance of high price, low quality movies out there I have a hard time justifying going to the movies anymore. (Though the biggest hurdle is often the mrs and I agreeing on a genre:))

    Looking at my own VHS (yes I said VHS) collection is always a fun trip down memory lane. One of the first that stands out as a great, but not a classic, movie is Primal Fear I REALY enjoyed the movie at the time and still think it was well done looking back at it. I’ve also liked the original Matrix as far as storyline.

    Judge if you want, but my go to movie has always been and always will be Top Gun. Loved since I was a kid and anyone that knows me won’t watch with me cause they know I know the whole thing by heart and will repeat it involuntarily if its on.

    Great post as always, and I will be letting you know once I watch End of Watch 🙂

    1. it’s not instant play on netflix, but you can get the dvd from them. i loved it. and agreed on the original matrix. awesome. after that, they went down hill. i love the wachowski brothers. one of them even became a chick. seriously! but, the story lines on the other two fell short. tho, you should watch their original film, ‘bound’ a gangsta flick with a lesbo subplot. it’s cray. but, great. as always, good to see you here. and let me know what you think of the movie. xo, sm

  10. Great review, I will have to check this out. Just as an aside, I saw Blair Witch in the theater and got so nauseous from the camera work that I had to leave the theater to throw up. True story.

    1. so feckin’ good, right? so good. it leaves you exhausted in the best possible way. oh and ‘spoiler’ for anyone else reading this… i read that the director had a different ending where both cops die. he changed it bc he didn’t want everyone leaving the theater completely traumatized and i would’ve been!!! so, i’m really glad he did. lool. big hugs, adrienne, big hugs. xoxo, sm

  11. Thanks for the review – I’ve been wondering if that was any good but since I’m not a big Jake G. fan I was going to wait. Now I can’t wait to see it.

    1. it is SOOOOOO good. and it totally lived up to its understated hype. maybe the BEST cop movie i’ve ever seen. i’m curious to know what you think once you watch it. so, stay in touch and thanks for swinging by here. all the best, sm

      1. Oh, P.S., I had a dream about you the other night. Don’t know what that means, but I also had a dream about Le Clown (A Clown on Fire). You weren’t asking me to make sure your Passat got to Pittsburgh, like Le Clown was. I think I need a WordPress break. LOL

  12. Sweet Mom i love movies…this one looks super cool..i think i will have to find ti online now…
    i used have huge collection of movies on my laptop n then it crashed 😦 i lost it all…im a Meg Ryan fan…i have all her movies..seen then thousand times..
    last movie i saw “The Exam”,…found it online..
    sorry i have been

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