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Review: Day Shift (2022)

Day Shift (2022)

Directed by: J.J. Perry

Premise: In contemporary Los Angeles there exists an underground network of professional vampire hunters whose work is monitored by a union. A down on his luck vampire hunter (Jamie Foxx) tries to get recertified and is assigned a desk jockey as a partner (Dave Franco).

What Works: Day Shift features an interesting concept. Much like the extraterrestrial immigration service of Men in Black and the assassin industry of John Wick, Day Shift imagines an underground industry of vampire hunting overseen by a professional organization that enforces a strict code of conduct. It is a compelling idea that gives Day Shift its one unique aspect in an otherwise cliché and unimaginative film.

What Doesn’t: Day Shift is fundamentally a cop story that we’ve seen a million times before. A trigger-happy rule breaker is paired with a conservative institutionalist and together they have to solve the big case. Day Shift brings nothing new to this formula nor does it do the concept well. There’s no sense of either character growing over the course of the story and Jamie Foxx and Dave Franco have no comic rapport. The movie is not funny and its jokes are mostly lame attempts at scatological humor. In addition to its cliché premise, the internal logic of Day Shift is sloppy and inconsistent. The vampires of this film are allergic to sunlight and yet there are plenty of scenes of vampires in rooms well-lit by daylight. Foxx’s character declares all vampires a menace but when heroic characters are converted to vampirism they carry on as a team without hardly any comment. Dayshift looks bad especially the fake digital vampires. The creatures bounce all over the screen with no sense of mass or weight or gravity and their injuries instantly heal with artificial looking digital effects. Everything in the movie looks plastic and unbelievable and none of the action has any stakes or reality. It all has the look of a video game. For that matter, the whole movie is shot in a flat and uninteresting way with little atmosphere or style.

Disc extras: On Netflix.

Bottom Line: Day Shift is a bland mix of cliché storytelling, unfunny humor, and uninspired filmmaking. It is a disappointing and frustratingly lazy movie.

Episode: #923 (October 23, 2022)