In the picture

August 21, 2022

Its premise may hold promise, but its weak script keeps Day Shift from living up to its potential.

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Day Shift☆☆

Starring: Jamie Foxx, Dave Franco, Natasha Liu Bordizzo, Meagan Good, Karla Souza, Steve Howey, Scott Adkins, and Snoop Dogg

Directed by: J. J. Perry

Tagline: Some jobs really go for the throat.


ven if you know nothing about J. J. Perry before you watch Day Shift, it will come as no surprise to you when you find out that the director has a stunt background, seeing how the film’s action sequences are pretty fun. Wrapped in a whole lot of mindless nonsense, sure, but still, pretty fun.

The movie – the latest in a string of subpar Netflix originals – offers some entertaining action scenes accompanied often by inventive fight choreography (contortionist vampires, anyone?) but doesn’t bother itself with things like logic, realism, and character development.

The protagonist is Bud Jablonski (Jamie Foxx), a vampire hunter who masquerades as a pool cleaner and is struggling with financial and familial issues. His ex-wife (Meagan Good) plans to move to another state with his daughter (Zion Broadnax) unless the cash-strapped Bud can quickly come up with funds to pay for the latter’s tuition and braces.

Selling coveted vampire fangs at a pawn shop won’t fetch him the kind of money he’s looking for. So, with a little help from his well-respected friend Big John Elliott (Snoop Dogg), Bud worms his way back into the more lucrative vampire hunting union from which he has previously been kicked out numerous times for breaking protocol. In light of his many previous transgressions, he must be supervised by a union rep, the faint-hearted Seth (Dave Franco), who must monitor Bud’s actions and report any violations he commits.

The vampires, meanwhile, have their own nefarious plans, which Bud incidentally gets entangled in. But worry not, for the bad guys will go out of their way to give the heroes every possible chance to thwart their scheme, for that’s the kind of movie this is.

There is potential in Day Shift’s goofy plot but it is very thoroughly squandered at every turn. The script is weak and in dire need of a rewrite. Plot holes abound. The jokes don’t land. Even the acting isn’t exactly stellar. Ideas are thrown into the story, often by way of dull exposition, and then promptly forgotten, points raised never to be addressed again.

Perry – who has previously worked extensively as a stuntman and stunt coordinator – knows his way around an action set piece and imbues his project with energy but fails to make the proceedings compelling or memorable. Watch the film if you’re in the mood for some mindless vampire action, but if things like plot holes, lowbrow humour, and bad writing bother you, then it might be a better idea to give this one a miss.

Rating system: *Not on your life * ½ If you really must waste your time ** Hardly worth the bother ** ½ Okay for a slow afternoon only
*** Good enough for a look see *** ½ Recommended viewing **** Don’t miss it **** ½ Almost perfect ***** Perfection

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