Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Nightfall (SIFF 2013) - Movie Review

Nightfall is the second feature film written and directed by Chow Hin Yeung Roy. This crime thriller from China stars Simon Yam, Michael Wong, and Nick Cheung.

Detective Lam (Yam) has seen more than his fair share of crime over the years and this has led him to obsess over cases that others would have laid to rest long ago. When two different murder cases begin to look a little too similar even though they were committed years apart, he begins to fit the pieces together that could lead to capturing a killer, although what he doesn't realize is that there may be much more to the story than what has been documented to this point.

What starts out looking like a complex and emotional drama quickly turns out to be overly melodramatic and a little too convoluted for its own good. I was also expecting more action, especially after an opening prison fight sequence that seems like its a tone setter but ends up feeling out of place in a movie that never again reaches the same level of intensity. Simon Yam is very good in this movie, but everything and everyone else around him unfortunately falls short of what this movie has the potential to be.

I give the creators of Nightfall high marks for effort but the execution just isn't there although I will admit to being legitimately surprised by some of the twists and turns. Hopefully this is just the beginning for Chow Hin Yeung Roy and he is given the chance to sharpen his skills and improve his craft.


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