20 February 2008
Just as serial killers are often considered to be an American phenomenon, the serial killer movie is largely seen as an American genre. Certainly the bulk of the genre's more notable titles have originated from the States, two of them - Se7en and Zodiac - by the same director. But a year before Fincher delivered the film that sealed his reputation, another film was playing some fine games with atmosphere a sense of dread involving a serial killer, and that film was made in...Denmark? You'd better believe it.
Martin a young law student, takes on a job as the overnight watchman at a local morgue to fund his studies, while his girlfriend, Kalinka studies to be an actress. His hell-raising, potentially insane best friend Jens uses the situation to embark upon an escalating series of audacious and grisly stunts and challenges, much to the disapproval of the local police and particularly one Inspector Wormer. Investigating a series of psychopathic murders involving young prostitutes being left scalped, Wormer's suspicions become aroused when one of these games goes perhaps a step too far. Now Martin is fighting for his and Kalinka's life as the killer, aware of all that they know, decides they must be silenced for good.
This 1994 debut feature from Danish director Ole Bornedal, which was remade three years later by the director in an English language version with Ewan McGregor and Nick Nolte, has met with considerable acclaim, a film that works but building suspense rather than hurling the shocks.
Previously released in the US by Anchor Bay but now discontinued, Nightwatch (Nattevagten) has been announced for a UK DVD release on 17th March by Metrodome at the RRP of £17.99. Special features will include a trailer and a Making of Nightwatch featurette.