The movie I chose was “Serpico. ” The setting of the movie begins with Frank Serpico the main character graduating from the Police Academy, He is determined to be a “good” cop and represent everything that the image of a law enforcer is meant to be. However, where there is bad there is good and the police force is no exception. No matter where Serpico goes Police Corruption seems to be all around and his morals are challenged time and time again. He however wants to change this and break down on Police Corruption, but of course with every department being corrupt instead of making it better for himself he is slowly digging his grave.
The movie shows that corruption in the police department is very common and those whom are part of will do anything for it not to be uncovered even at the cost of losing officers. The following represent a few examples of how police corruption works and as well some types of police corruption Frank has to deal with. 1. At his first precinct Serpico already begins to encounter corruption beginning with a sort of “benefit. ” When Serpico goes to get lunch with the other officer they stand in line and order and then are told it will be right over.
In other word they get it for free without paying and in return quote, “we give him a break on double parking. ” The type of corruption represented here is free meals or services. In order to avoid the ticket for double parking the owner gives free meals working as a bribe. Technically he is protected from parking tickets and he just provides a benefit. 2. While on patrol incidents are reported through the radio and likewise it occurs to Serpico however, and his partner represents two different police “personalities. ” Serpico is the super-cop while his partner is the lazy cop whom is avoiding the call because quote, “it is not their sector”.
He does all the work captures one of the criminals and when he returns to the precinct is told by the higher ranking officers that he will get the assist and they will take the credit. Which relates back to what you professor Satka said about how higher ranking officers tend to take the credit from patrolmen’s work due to their position in the hierarchy. From this scene also comes another form of police corruption, and that is police brutality. Serpico brings in one of the accomplices in the attempted rape and the detective takes him into the room and completely beats down on the kid and asks Serpico if he wants part of the fun.
In other words the detective used excessive amount of force in order to lay down the law and to try to get the name of the other accomplices. 3. Serpico during the whole movie is trying to get his gold badge and to do so he begins to move up in ranks eventually becoming a plain clothes officer. However to be in these positions he is constantly moving from place to place which does affect his life. This I relate back to our guest speaker of the state troopers whom said his marriage was affected by him moving, and this occurs likewise first with the actress when she offers marriage but he chooses his job.
Secondly, His future to be wife leaves him due to the fact that the job is taking over his life and his intentions to change the system is much more of a priority than that of being with her. The police system and its rankings require a lot of work and dedication as well as patience and these requirements are hard to maintain when others need you around in other words its life changing decisions and very unstable. Hearing and seeing things are two different things and the movie Serpico helped a lot to understand how hard it is to start at the bottom and the gains and losses one gets from moving up.
Also it helped much more to understand police corruption and how the superior figures try to deal with it or in most cases avoid knowing its existence because of the “image” of their departments. However, one thing I wished that could be more clear is how other officers convince other officers to be part of the corruption because it can not that easy and unnoticeable to be a “corrupt cop. ” This assignment makes it much simpler to understand specific themes because with the knowledge we already know we can be more analytical of what to look for or what is occurring.
But, it can be hard to focus due to the fact that to actually pay attention the material we look at has to be interesting from the start to finish and some of the movies can get dull. Also I think it helps because of course to make films more exciting they have to exaggerate a couple things for example, in Serpico officers the first thing they do at every scene is pull their guns out which according to you shouldn’t be done. But with me knowing that I know ok that’s not part of the system which tells me I have learned something from the material.