Sicilian director Francesco Calogero, whose films have been uncommercial and uneven but not uninteresting, moves into conventional genre territory with "Nightwatchman." Despite promising ideas about the irrational behavior and alienation fostered by a lonely, stressful, nocturnal job, and a capable cast led by popular star Diego Abatantuono, this sluggish, drab-looking mystery drama is too low on atmosphere, edge and tension to have much theatrical impact.
Sicilian director Francesco Calogero, whose films have been uncommercial and uneven but not uninteresting, moves into conventional genre territory with “Nightwatchman.” Despite promising ideas about the irrational behavior and alienation fostered by a lonely, stressful, nocturnal job, and a capable cast led by popular star Diego Abatantuono, this sluggish, drab-looking mystery drama is too low on atmosphere, edge and tension to have much theatrical impact.
An abrasive type constantly riding his fellow security guards, Paolo (Abatantuono) violently argues with a colleague one night, then returns later to find the man shot. The crime scene is outside the home of a beautiful Russian woman (Anna Safroncik), whom the increasingly obsessed Paolo has been spying on through her window for months. The script’s aim is to foreground the characters and their solitude rather than the standard thriller machinations. But the investigation proceeds in dull, TV-drama fashion as Paolo weeds out the squad’s corrupt elements to clear his name. Zero chemistry between Abatantuono and inexpressive Safroncik keeps the romance tepid, but aside from that, cast generally is better than the material.
An Eagle Pictures release of a Digital Film production, in association with RAI, with participation of Telepiu. Produced by Galliano Juso. Directed by Francesco Calogero. Screenplay, Calogero, Umberto Contarello; story, Vincenzo Pardini. Camera (Cinecitta color), Giulio Pietromarchi; editor, Davide Azzigana; music, Mario Tronco, Pinomarino Band; art director, Riccardo Benvenuti; costume designer, Angela Buscemi. Reviewed at Barberini Cinema, Rome, March 28, 2000. Original title: Metronotte. Running time: 103 MIN.
With: Diego Abatantuono, Anna Safroncik, Flavio Insinna, Marco Messeri, Simona Caramelli, Antonio Petrocelli, Ugo Conti, Nini Salerno, Antonella Ponziani.
Popular on Variety
Questions the 'Game of Thrones' Cast Can't Wait to Never Be Asked Again
'Game of Thrones' Cast Pick the Best Death Scenes
'Game of Thrones' Cast Relives Their Wildest Fan Encounters
Taron Egerton Calls Paramount's Attempt to Cut Out 'Rocketman' Gay Sex Scene 'Nonsense'
'Shazam's' Zachary Levi Credits Self-Love for His Success
Linda Hamilton Calls Last Three 'Terminator' Movies 'Forgettable'
Michelle Wolf Roasts Trump for Skipping Third Correspondents' Dinner
Hugh Jackman Was Rejected From His High School Production of 'The Music Man'
Watch Bette Midler's Impassioned Plea for a More Just, Civilized and Loving Planet
Christiane Amanpour: 'We Are Bludgeoned Over the Head by Untruthful Trope of Fake News'
UPDATED with statements from John Singleton’s family and FX Networks John Singleton, the Oscar nominated director and writer of “Boyz N’ the Hood,” has suffered a stroke. Sources confirm to Variety that Singleton checked himself into the hospital earlier this week after experiencing pain in his leg. The stroke has been characterized by doctors as [...]
New Line’s horror pic “The Curse of La Llorona” will summon a solid $25 million debut at the domestic box office, leading a quiet Easter weekend before Marvel’s “Avengers: Endgame” hits theaters on April 26. The James Wan-produced “La Llorona,” playing in 3,372 theaters, was a hit with hispanic audiences, who accounted for nearly 50% [...]
“Carmine Street Guitars” is a one-of-a-kind documentary that exudes a gentle, homespun magic. It’s a no-fuss, 80-minute-long portrait of Rick Kelly, who builds and sells custom guitars out of a modest storefront on Carmine Street in New York’s Greenwich Village, and the film touches on obsessions that have been popping up, like fragrant weeds, in [...]
In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Annapurna Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Missing Link.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.91 million through Sunday for [...]
So much of the recent political debate has focused on the United States’ southern border, and on the threat of illegal drugs and criminals filtering up through Mexico. But what of the north, where Americans traffic opiates and prescription pills from Canada across a border that runs nearly three times as long? “Little Woods” opens [...]
Netflix has become a destination for television visionaries like Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, with deals worth $100 million and $250 million, respectively, and top comedians like Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle ($40 million and $60 million, respectively). The streaming giant, which just announced it’s added nearly 10 million subscribers in Q1, is honing in [...]
Humphrey Bogart never said, “Play it again, Sam” in the 1942 Oscar-winning classic “Casablanca.” In fact, no one says it in the movie. And the mysterious voice in the adored 1989 fantasy film “Field of Dreams” does not tell Kevin Costner: “If you build it, they will come.” Released 30 years ago on April 21, [...]