End of Watch’s Gyllenhaal and Peña: Bros Before Po-pos

End of Watch

Dude, dude, dude, dude, dude, dude, dude, bro, bro, bro, bro, bro, bro, bro, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!

– Gyllenhaal describing Peña’s frequent use of the words “dude” and “bro”


Mel Gibson and Danny Glover, Robert Redford and Paul Newman, Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, Buzz and Woody… and, hear me out, Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña. A lot of the times in cop movies, enforcing the law is in the foreground, sometimes pushed along by good chemistry (or not), but End of Watch is entirely about friendship, two guys who just happen to be cops. It goes without saying, that this movie would have been a complete failure if not for, in my opinion, one of the most authentic on-screen friendships I have ever seen. If there was an Oscar for Best Bromance, these guys would have it in the bag.

End of Watch is a movie about two guys who have become best buds through working on the same beat together for years. When the going gets tough, it’s not just about looking out for your partner because you have to, it’s about  knowing (for lack of a better term, sorry) you’d take a bullet for someone you couldn’t live without. When you’re caught up in their car ride banter, you’re convinced that they’re long-time, real-life BFFs, but shockingly, they two didn’t even really like each other when they first met.

Director David Ayer says in an interview, “At first Mike and Jake weren’t getting along and didn’t want to be around each other.” Actually, their friendship formed after a “massive fight” during their five months of tactical training for the role, said Gyllenhaal in another interview. If you’ve seen this movie, you’re probably as surprised as I am. If you haven’t seen this movie, then their beyond-perfect chemistry is what’ll surprise you.

While I can’t really rave about the rest of the movie (though it wasn’t too bad), I don’t mind, because anything next to that duo just pales in comparison.

Are they still friends after the movie? It’s hard to tell from this clip. (Though they also look completely beat after a long press junket.)


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