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Policeman (2014)

tomatometer

86

Average Rating: 8.5/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 1

No consensus yet.

audience

44

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 151

My Rating

Movie Info

Yaron, an elite special operations squad leader, is the spiritual leader and alpha male among his peers, a small, highly trained team that is part of the Israeli Defense Ministry's Anti-Terrorism unit. These men work, play, laugh, and cry together. They are true patriots. Yaron's wife is expecting their first child, and the failing health of a team member weighs on his soul, and the price that must be paid as a result of this. As the story shifts, the antagonists are introduced: a small group of

Unrated,

Art House & International, Drama

Nadav Lapid

Corinth Films - Official Site External Icon

Cast

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June 12, 2014:
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All Critics (16) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (11) | Rotten (5)

Policeman creates contrasts between families and surrogate families; patriarchy and maternity; truth and fiction; and sanctioned and unsanctioned aggression.

June 19, 2014 Full Review Source: AV Club
AV Club
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Lapid's workmanlike direction illustrates his airless script efficiently, and sometimes engagingly, but unimaginatively. He has something to say; he shows very little.

June 16, 2014 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mr. Lapid, making an electrifying feature directing debut, traces the line between the group and the individual in a story that can be read as a commentary on the world as much as on Israel.

June 12, 2014 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A boldly conceived and bracingly told political drama.

June 11, 2014 Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Nadav Lapid's Policeman deftly examines the physical and spiritual fallout of ideology turning into action.

June 10, 2014 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Fascinating but uneven.

December 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Staging of scenes, klutzy editing and what I suspect are actors self-directing, challenges the storytelling and its uniformity.

June 23, 2014 Full Review Source: Cinema Signals
Cinema Signals

Obviously, this tale engages many hot-button issues in present-day Israel. But does it say anything particularly incisive or meaningful about their complexity?

June 13, 2014 Full Review Source: RogerEbert.com
RogerEbert.com

Policeman is a notable debut from young Israeli film-maker Nadav Lapid which packs quite a punch.

June 11, 2014 Full Review Source: Screen International
Screen International

Lapid's sense of rhythm is as clunky as his compositions... [Policeman] perversely ends at the exact moment that it finally gets interesting.

June 11, 2014 Full Review Source: The Dissolve
The Dissolve

Israel's fractured psyche is plumbed via narrative splintering in Policeman, Nadav Lapid's compelling drama about his homeland's burgeoning social unrest.

June 8, 2014 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

Yet from the get-go an ambient unease has been built into the film's thoughtful cutting and framing, more Antonioni than Haneke.

June 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Comment Magazine
Film Comment Magazine

Lands a gut-punch once their paths intersect in the riveting climax.

May 23, 2013 Full Review Source: Flicks.co.nz
Flicks.co.nz

Director Nadav Lapid, in his feature debut, over-emphasizes the rituals of machismo, from the back slapping (thump, thump, thump) to the fetishizing of guns that carries over the entire film.

November 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Film-Forward.com
Film-Forward.com

Audience Reviews for Policeman

While some might be disappointed that "Policeman" does not resemble an average fast-paced episode of "Flashpoint," the movie's deliberate pace does allow for a thoughtful examination of today's Israel and the fractures that exist just beneath the surface. While the police and terrorists might not seem to have anything in common, they actually do, in that they resolve their disputes through violence.

Yaron(Yiftach Klein) is the leader of an elite police unit who is also soon to be a father. As such, he looks after his wife Nili's(Meital Barda) every need, even carrying her very pregnant person up several flights of stairs. He is also lecherous enough to hit on a waitress who it turns out is only 15. Ariel(Gal Hoyberger), one of his comrades, has a tumor and the other men in the unit pity him before shifting the blame on a massacre onto him, albeit with his approval.

By contrast, the terrorists do make some valid points. However, Shira(Yaara Pelzig), their spokesperson, is about the only stereotype in a movie full of three dimensional characters, as she seems to be a spoiled young otherwise undecided rich woman who is simply involved in the movement as a way of rebelling against her parents. But Pelzig's fierce performance makes up for some of that.

With an intriguing structure that stays exclusively with each group for an act, I am still a little befuddled by the movie's final shot, like I missed something I should have been paying attention to earlier.
June 20, 2014
Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Policeman (DE)
  • Policeman (Ha-shoter) (UK)
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