Nightwatch (1994 film)

Nightwatch (Danish: Nattevagten) is a 1994 Danish thriller film directed and written by Danish director Ole Bornedal.[1] The film involves Martin (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) who gets a student job as night watchman at the Forensic Medicine Institute. When making his rounds he finds he must go to where the deceased people are kept. At the same time, a series of murders occur among women in Copenhagen as well as mysterious and unexplained things happening in the medical department.[2]

Nightwatch
Nightwatch-1994-poster.jpg
Danish film poster
Directed byOle Bornedal
Written byOle Bornedal
Produced byMichael Obel
StarringNikolaj Coster-Waldau
Sofie Gråbøl
Kim Bodnia
Lotte Andersen
Ulf Pilgaard
CinematographyDan Laustsen
Edited byCamilla Skousen
Music byJoachim Holbek [da; de; no]
Production
company
Thura Film
Release date
  • February 25, 1994 (1994-02-25) (Denmark)
Running time
104 minutes
CountryDenmark
LanguageDanish

Nightwatch was a success in Denmark and was shown at the Fantafestival in 1995. An English-language remake of the film, also directed by Bornedal, was released in 1997. The original Nightwatch was included on a list of the top 100 Danish films as chosen by Kosmorama.

PlotEdit

Law student Martin Bork (Nikolaj Coster Waldau) gets a student job as night watchman at the Forensic Medicine Institute, believing it will allow more time to study, with his biggest problem being his paranoia in this scary setting. When making his rounds, he finds he must go to where the deceased people are kept. At the same time, a series of murders occur among women in Copenhagen, and mysterious and unexplained things start to happen in the medical department. During all of this, Martin ends up being confused with one of the murders, becoming a prime suspect.

ProductionEdit

Director Ole Bornedal began writing the script for Nightwatch after the release of his television film Masturbator (1993).[3][4] He was inspired to make the movie after a trip he made to a morgue in Copenhagen.[5] He stated in an interview, "I went to this morgue in a city of one million people, and it was both scary and beautiful. It made me think about how, outside, there is this daily life going on, and suddenly you're standing in a cellar realizing this is where it all ends. It makes you think about life and how you're living it."[5]

Bornedal also wrote much of the script at night, he states: "I was writing the story at night, in an office all by myself, sometimes until four in the morning. I didn't dare go out to my car because I would have to walk through all of these dark hallways."[5] Principal photography would occur in Denmark during 1993.[citation needed]

CastEdit

ReleaseEdit

The film was released on February 25, 1994.[6] Nightwatch was a success in Denmark where it sold 465,529 tickets.[7] The film was shown at the 1995 Fantafestival in Rome, Italy.[8] The film was selected to be part of the 1994 Critic's Week at the Cannes Film Festival.[9]

A DVD of Nightwatch was released by Anchor Bay on May 29, 2001. The disc contains an audio commentary by Ole Bornedal and a theatrical trailer for the film.[10]

ReceptionEdit

Ole Bornedal felt that Nightwatch was not "a great work of art, but it did help legitimate the idea that even European film art can make good use of generic stories."[11] Nightwatch was included on a list of the top 100 Danish film as chosen by Kosmorama.[12] Rikke Louise Andersson [af; da; de] won the award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Joyce in the film at the 1995 Bodil Awards.[13] Variety gave the film a fairly favorable review, referring to it as a "slickly made but fairly conventional tale".[14]

RemakeEdit

An English-language remake of the film, also titled Nightwatch, was released in 1997 and directed by Ole Bornedal, but with a new script by Steven Soderbergh based on Bornedal's original film.[15]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Schepelern, P. (2010). Filmleksikon (in Danish). Gyldendal. p. 95. ISBN 978-87-02-04523-9. Archived from the original on 2 June 2021. Retrieved 2 June 2021.
  2. ^ Tobey, Matthew. "Nightwatch". Allrovi. Archived from the original on January 13, 2012. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  3. ^ Hjort, 2003. p. 229
  4. ^ Hjort, 2003. p. 231
  5. ^ a b c "NIGHTWATCH - Movie Production Notes...CinemaReview.com". cinemareview.com. 5 September 2015. Archived from the original on 5 September 2015. Retrieved 24 June 2021.
  6. ^ "Nattevagten" (in Danish). The Danish Film Institute. Archived from the original on September 30, 2012. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  7. ^ Hjort, 2003. p. 235
  8. ^ "15° Fantafestival – 1995". Fantafestival (in Italian). Archived from the original on April 29, 2014. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  9. ^ "Cannes Critics' Week names pic selections". Variety. April 21, 1994. Archived from the original on June 24, 2021. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  10. ^ Buchanan, Jason. "Nightwatch – DVD". Allrovi. Archived from the original on July 23, 2012. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
  11. ^ Hjort, 2003. p. 234
  12. ^ "Dansk Spillefilm Top 100" (in Danish). The Danish Film Institute. Archived from the original on July 1, 2013. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  13. ^ "1995". Bodil Awards (in Danish). Archived from the original on March 8, 2012. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
  14. ^ Nesselson, Lisa (May 29, 1994). "Nightwatch". Variety. Archived from the original on June 24, 2021. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  15. ^ Stewart, Bhob. "Nightwatch". Allrovi. Archived from the original on January 24, 2012. Retrieved January 25, 2012.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit