By THOMAS BOND
David Ayer’s latest cop-drama is gritty, violent and full of perfect moments of flawlessly recreated reality. “End of Watch” is told through a combination of first person video captured by Officer Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal) for his film class, as well as traditional methods, resulting in a refreshingly vibrant mix of styles and storytelling. We watch Officers Taylor and Zavala (Michael Pena), the ultimate buddy cops, as they drive around what may be the most dangerous beat in America: Los Angeles’ South Central. After an exciting opening shootout they get perhaps a bit full of themselves and investigate a house they might shouldn’t have investigated. The horrors they uncover expose a large drug cartel who then sets their sights on the two officers, throwing the usual “don’t kill cops” rule to the wind in pursuit of preserving their business. Led by a man known as Big Evil (because his “evil is big”), the cartel sets up a riveting last act that pits the two resourceful cops in an all-out war with the whole gang of fully-automatic-toting baddies. In between we get insightful glimpses at the lives behind these two brave badges and the women who pray for them to come home (Natalie Martinez and Anna Kendrick). “End of Watch” is another realistic cop-drama from the writer of “Training Day” that brims with emotion and violence. It doesn’t pull any punches, only triggers.