A Cop Movie director opens up on hard-hitting issue in Netflix documentary ‘Ludicrous11/23/2021
A Cop Movie: Netflix release trailer for documentary
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Netflix’s documentary drama hybrid A Cop Movie recently landed on the streaming giant. The documentary, which cleverly blurs the lines between fact and fiction, follows the struggles of two Mexican police officers. Director Alonso Ruizpalacios wanted to explore dysfunction within Mexico City policing and in an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk he opened up about the “ludicrous” wages officers are paid.
The recent Netflix release follows the story of husband and wife police officers Teresa (played by Monica Del Carmen) and Montoya (Raul Briones).
Through their fictional roles and real testimonies, A Cop Movie portrays the “shocking” realities of being an officer in Mexico.
Ruizpalacios, who wanted to focus the documentary on corruption within the force, said he started developing the project about five years ago.
“We were coming to the end of the former president of Mexico and Mexico was in a really terrible state and I wanted to do something which sort of addressed this and something which wasn’t just entertainment,” the Mexican native explained.
“I kind of had the fantasy of being useful somehow so I got together with two friends who are producers and we wanted to make a film about the corruption crisis which plagued Mexico.”
He said he wanted to focus on police officers because they were “the first window that we have as citizens to what is known as the law”.
“They embody law and we started talking to policemen and women and we couldn’t believe the things that we found and take for granted,” Ruizpalacios added.
Within the documentary, officers are filmed as they carry out their duties, while they open up on the difficulties of serving members of the public who don’t trust the police.
The filmmaker explained: “We all walk by policemen and have fixed opinions about them and we hardly ever stop and look them in the eye and wonder what their lives are like.”
He said the police around the world have become “so unpopular” in recent years for a host of reasons which are often out of their control.
“I think films are a very privileged way of driving into someone’s life,” Ruizpalacios explained.
The 43-year-old director said, “everything he discovered was a shock” when he and his colleagues started filming for the Netflix documentary.
He was particularly taken aback by Mexican police officers’ wages, explaining: “I don’t know how it is in England but in Mexico, it’s ludicrous how the wages for a cop are really low – incredibly low.
“And they are expected to perform all these tasks and risk their lives to do the right thing on these wages.
“These wages are setting them out to fail basically.”
He was also surprised that it only takes someone a matter of months to train as a police officer in Mexico.
Ruizpalacios added: “It takes just six months to be a cop and be able to have a gun and patrol the streets – and that’s nothing.
They are very undertrained. And all of these things were quite shocking.”
Another hard-hitting issue that hit home with Ruizpalacios was the lack of trust the Mexican public has in the police.
Ruizpalacios explained: “They [the police] all agreed they know citizens don’t trust them and so for many of them it’s a very disappointing job on a day to day basis, they are going out to protect citizens who don’t trust them.
“I think from what we found, there’s a small percentage of police officers who have a calling, some of them come from police families, but most of them have no other alternatives and it’s just a job to them.
“There are these dreams of glory, but they often realise it’s not quite like that.”
A Cop Movie is now available to watch on Netflix.
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