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Movie Review: Day Shift is a gripping, action-packed vampire comedy with stellar performances

Effortlessly evolving to adapt to and ultimately thriving in an ever-changing environment, while remaining true to their core values, is important to all members and all aspects of the society. That’s certainly true for the cast, crew, and characters of Netflix’s new vampire action-comedy, day shift.

Moving away from the more serious, character-driven vampire movies and TV series that were released during the horror subgenre’s most recent surge in popularity in the late 200s and early 2010s, day shift offers a welcome change to vampire lore. Directed by veteran stuntman JJ Perry in his directorial debut, the comedy doesn’t portray its vampires as likeable anti-heroes worth redeeming like more recent projects in the subgenre.

In place, day shift thrives on its unexpected natural comedic bond between its lead actors, Jamie Foxx and Dave Franco. Accompanying their humor are the lighthearted fights they engage in with the ruthless vampires, as both sides want nothing more than to protect their own kind.

QUARTER DAY. (L to R) Dave Franco as Seth and Jamie Foxx as Bud in Day Shift. cr. Parrish Lewis/Netflix © 2022

day shift follows Bud Jablonski (Foxx), a vampire hunter from Los Angeles who moonlights as a pool cleaner in order to scour the San Fernando Valley in search of the undead and immortal beings. He kills vampires and sells their fangs to several black market buyers, including Troy (Peter Stormare), in order to support his 8-year-old daughter, Paige (Zion Broadnax).

Bud is surprised when his ex-wife, Jocelyne (Meagan Good), unexpectedly informs her that she needs $10,000 within a week to pay for Paige’s tuition and braces or else she will have to move in with her mother in Florida. He becomes so determined to make a quick buck that he asks his former colleague, Big John Elliot (Snoop Dogg), to help him get reinstated into the Vampire Hunters Syndicate, from which he was expelled for numerous code violations.

In order to be accepted back into the union, Bud must be accompanied at all times by an employee of the union office, Seth (Franco), who is completely inexperienced in the field. Seth’s boss, Ralph (Eric Lange), forces him to accompany Bud at all times during their hunts and to report any violations he commits.

But the radically different Hunters quickly bond with Bud’s desire to protect his family from their new enemy: former vampire Audrey (Karla Souza), who is determined to do whatever it takes to fully infiltrate the Valley with her followers. . The adversaries continue to chase each other until they meet in a final showdown that promises to leave only the side victorious.

QUARTER DAY. (L to R) Jamie Foxx as Bud, Zion Broadnax as Paige and Meagan Good as Jocelyn in Day Shift. cr. Parrish Lewis/Netflix © 2022

day shift thrives on its thrilling mix of comedy and action sequences, but, like most entries in the action genre, doesn’t fully flush out its character and plot developments. Tice, who got his start writing feature films with comedy, and veteran action scribe Hatten, who also wrote Netflix army of the dead series and John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellumfollowed several general genre tropes.

One of the film‘s biggest plot holes is that the vampire lore isn’t fully explained. There are few specifics about how Audrey became the leader of the vamps in the valley and what her political agenda is, as well as why and how her followers split into several different factions.

day shift also doesn’t provide much history in the lives of Bud, Seth, and the people around them, and how they were led in their fields of work. While Bud and Seth have both devoted their lives to killing vampires, no explanation is given as to how they choose the line of work and what part of the estate to pursue.

Despite this lack of detailed explanations of the characters’ personalities, Foxx and Franco bring their characters to life in exciting ways on screen throughout the film. The two actors, who initially seem poorly cast against each other in day shiftultimately prove to be a perfect fit as they each thrive on showing off their characters’ unique arcs.

Foxx infuses Bud with powerful fearlessness as he works the field to end the undead lives of his enemies. The Oscar-winning actor also proves the titular character isn’t afraid to stand up for himself against vampires or question the ethics of killing someone who was once human. he instead focuses on his need to pick up their fangs so he can earn money to support his family.

QUARTER DAY. Karla Souza as Audrey in Day Shift. cr. Netflix © 2022.

Franco, meanwhile, effortlessly brings Seth’s naivety about how to hunt vampires to the field while observing and learning from Bud’s pursuit of Audrey and her followers. The Emmy-nominated actor effortlessly plays his new vampire hunter as reluctant to begin his newly assigned duties, hoping to prove to Ralph that he deserves a promotion to the union office. But Seth soon strikes up a real friendship with Bud who instills a confidence in him that encourages her to believe in him.

While Foxx and Franco prove to have surprisingly remarkable chemistry together on screen throughout the film, the feature also really thrives on its elaborate fight scenes, which make up most of the story.

Perry, who has 30 years of experience as a stuntman/coordinator in Hollywood, including choreographing action sequences in the fast furious and John Wick series, infused day shift with equally imaginative and thrilling stunts. From vampires acting as contortionists to defend themselves against Bud and Seth during their fights, to the duo blasting their enemies backwards during undead hive raids, the gripping stunts will likely be what will be remembered most from the novella. comedy in the future.

If the character and the plots are unfortunately underdeveloped in day shift, the feature turns out to be a gripping, action-packed vampire comedy. The film thrives on its natural, light-hearted bond between Foxx and Franco, whose protagonists quickly learn to overcome their differences, in order to engage in gripping battles with the ruthless vampires and protect humanity.

day shift is now streaming on Netflix.

Category B-

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Here is the movie trailer.