Although this action filled, comedy laced, throwaway flick doesn’t reinvent the wheel it’s a whole lot more fun than it has any right to be.
Written by Alex Gilston / August 18, 2022
Vampires meet the San Fernando Valley in J.J. Perry’s directorial debut, and Netflix original film, Day Shift. The talents of Jamie Foxx and Dave Franco are brought together with an extra Snoop Dogg thrown in for good measure.
Day Shift follows begrudging vampire Hunter Bud Jablonski, played by Jamie Foxx, who’s trying to make ends meet by selling various types of Vampire’s teeth (a commodity in this universe). When his estranged wife threatens to move away with his daughter to another state he must try to raise enough money to get them to stay. Many hurdles are thrown his way, firstly having to rejoin the Union he was chucked out of for breaking the rules, and being assigned a jobsworth desk jockey, played by Dave Franco, to make sure he follows those rules. Secondly being pursued by an ancient Alpha vampire for doing her wrong. Although Day Shift doesn’t bring anything new, it transcends its simplistic cliched plot thanks to its slick and satisfying action, and talented cast.
Jamie Foxx is, as always, brilliant. Further proving how he is one of the best leading men in Hollywood. He plays gruff very well and is able to inject bits of comedy here and there to level out his performance. Dave Franco provides most of the laughs as the weedy Seth. As a novice vampire Hunter and fish out of water his reactions to the seemingly insane situations he’s thrust into are wonderfully funny. Karla Souza, figuratively and literally, sinks her teeth into the villainous role and is genuinely threatening albeit a little goofy. Snoop Dogg easily makes the biggest impact here however, by dropping in as he pleases being a cooler than cool cowboy vampire hunter.
Day Shift thrives when its characters are going full on against hordes of vampires in impeccably choreographed set pieces that make Netflix fodder, like Red Notice and The Gray Man, look like action films for kindergarteners. One scene in particular that finds the main characters in a vampire hive was like John Wick on steroids. Every singular thing that every person did led smoothly into each other and made for a seamless and satisfying few moments.
Where Day Shift lacks in its story and, sometimes cringey, dialogue it makes up for ten fold in its acting talent and frenetic action. It may find itself lost to the Netflix original film garbage pile as many of its predecessors, but at least for a moment it made its impact.