Policeman (2011) Poster

(2011)

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Tomorrow's news, without much commentary
Nozz1 November 2011
This summer Israel saw a large non-violent movement of social protest against the gap between rich and poor. There was a bit of a gasp when POLICEMAN came out, because although obviously written some time before this summer (moviemaking being the slow process that it is), it depicts a protest focused on the same theme and (like the real one) including a college-aged girl from a rich family as its spokesperson. The difference is that in the movie the movement is small and violent. Its members are shown as raising real problems (heaven knows the rich really are too rich and the poor too poor) but driven largely by personal issues and limited even in their conceptualization of their own plans. Against them is a team of police who are also not without a touch of ridiculousness-- always roughhousing, always exercising, not leaving the apartment without doing pushups first; in fact, there does not seem to be a single level-headed, normal-living character to anchor the movie. The sanest speech is perhaps a short harangue from one of the hated capitalists, and it offers no big solutions. At the same time, the film contains several scenes that seem to stop too soon or omit background information, while other scenes stretch on into extra moments, as if even the filmmaker could not hope always to be paying attention to the right thing at the right time. The result is a movie that does not seem to take anyone's side or promote any particular agenda even though it has intriguing and even strongly suspenseful moments and it arouses the feeling that something must be done. This is not the stuff that crowd-pleasers are made of, and it looks as if POLICEMAN will not be chalking up very many weeks on the big screen.
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10/10
Pure poetry
afertak13 October 2011
What does it mean to live in modern Israel? When you are raised in a country full of violence, conflicted and still fighting, how does it affect you? Main character is a policeman from anti-terroristic unit of Jerusalem Force. His wife can get birth to their daughter any minute now, his friend's fighting with cancer and he's been under investigation for wounding and killing four civilians during the hunt after no.2 terrorist from Most Wanted List. But in this critical situations he stays calm and firm, because that is exactly what he, the fighter and warrior, should be in times of crisis. Young revolutionists, naive and romantic, with mouths full of cries for social justice, and with XIXth century vision of society, are standing in the opposite corner of this story. They're Israeli bourgeois, raised in middle or upper class, from good schools and universities. Intellectuals lost in reality, dreaming of beautiful utopias, with admiration towards violence. Especially young poet, Shira - delicate blond girl with such incredible hunger for reasons and taking actions. She talks in slogans and poems - e.g. to a young, beautiful bride, daughter of true capitalist: "You are not a woman, but a bride. You have no face- you've got make up. You have no breasts, but perfectly fitted bra. You have no body - you have this dress. And this dress is exactly in the size of your personality."

Violence is the key to understand this film - it is everywhere, even in greetings between policemen or in kisses from Shira. It is in almost every word coming from characters' lips. We are watching Shira with a gun that is almost as big as her forearm and Yoran carrying a baby right after a cruel wrestling with his friends. Even when he's carrying his pregnant wife upstairs to his mother's place. But when those two characters meet, suddenly something will blow, some walls will crush and there will be an understanding. Maybe it will not be conscious, but a change is coming.
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8/10
Stunning and thought provoking film
mlbrown871 May 2012
Warning: Spoilers
At first, I was prepared to call this film a slow-burner, however there's something more unique going on here. The story lines introduced throughout the beginning of the film do not ultimately grow and resolve, nor do they eventually tie together. Rather, they simply lead no where, and the audience is left to wonder why we were shown them at all, a question that I don't have a clear answer to. On one level, it functions as a statement to show that these characters indeed have lives, loves, challenges and struggles, even if they do not directly relate to the plot. On another level, the director may simply be looking to fill out the character study, showing us what is going on under the surface of these outwardly vocal and militant characters, on both sides of the law.

Aside from this, the acting in the film was universally superb. The characters we meet are incredibly multifaceted and nuanced, and these actors met that challenge admirably. The characters are not on the whole very likable or sympathetic, but they are incredibly compelling, due in large part to the acting. The writing and directing were equally effective and even-handed. Undoubtedly, this film had a lot to say about Israeli society, and in particular Israeli law enforcement, youth culture, activism, and terrorism, all topics that I am decidedly ill-equipped to comment on. Although aspects of this brooding film elude me, it was certainly thrilling to watch, and left me with a lot to think about.

Read the full review here: http://mattreviewsstuff.com/2012/04/30/policeman/
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4/10
unique story, poor performance
rakefet19913 November 2014
Warning: Spoilers
It's a unique story, but there are a few problems with this movie. The policemen's characters are very shallow. I lived in Israel and met many policemen, including ones in special units and I don't recall anyone acting like this. I have personally met Yiftach, the lead actor (many years ago), he's arrogant and it doesn't surprise me that he wouldn't be able to portray well the character of this policeman.(aside from the acting, he still looks good).

Also the script-writer messed up.

1. These rebellious young people should not have been meeting in the parent's luxurious apartment.

2. Why did they shoot the photographer? (he is struggling financially like them)

3. The main character didn't seem to be struggling that much and why is he hugging everyone all the time? This is not an Indian soap opera.
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1/10
The worst movie I watch lately
saratim15 May 2012
First at all, I can't believe that so many people gave this movie so high score. Some good actors,like Menashe Noy or Mushonov Junior, but many bad interpretations. The Police main role its not credible.

This movie is a waste of time. The direction is terrible; no direction. No clear message, confuse and that don't reflect the reality of Israel. The figures are not representatives and the script seems that was written by a teenager that wanna be a writer; common places, disconnection of the situations and no poetry at all. Don't find nor an aesthetic line.

After watching the very good film "footnotes", this movie is a deception.
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8/10
Very interesting thriller/drama from Israel, but with a weak middle section
Andy-29631 December 2013
Warning: Spoilers
An interesting, if flawed, Israeli drama/political thriller. The movie has three acts: in the first act, we are shown the lives of an anti terrorist squad, centered on the life of one of its members. Yaron (Yiftach Klein). In what is clearly the best part of the movie, we see their family lives, their friendships, their macho attitudes. The second part centers on an extreme-left cell composed of just a few young people just out of their teens, seemingly from an upper middle class background. Decrying the inequality of Israeli society, they train with guns at shooting ranges as they plan to move from rhetoric to direct action. This is the weakest part of the film, since they seem so naive, and off putting. They just don't ring true, and less so when one of the kids' fathers, after learning about his son's activities in the clandestine anti capitalist cell , decides to join him in the struggle. The third, final part of the movie (Warning: SPOILERS AHEAD) has the cell decide to kidnap an Israeli billionaire at the wedding of her daughter. The anti terror squad is called to solve the standoff. The ending is for once quite satisfying, almost making up for the very weak middle segment.
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