A waitress working the night shift at a roadside diner in a small, industrial town becomes intrigued by a charming truck driver, while the diner's owner struggles to keep his dwindling business afloat.
Three Texas teens hope to make a break for it and escape their dead-end existence in a cotton-mill town but get sucked into the seedy underbelly of organized crime when one of them steals from the wrong man.
Police Beat is a highly unconventional crime film in which the protagonist Z is so preoccupied with his possibly unfaithful girlfriend that he never once acknowledges criminal world that swirls around him. The crimes Z encounters become mirrors of the his turbulent inner state, allowing him to philosophize about his unstable romantic relationship as well as his own development as an emotional being. While Z's regular interactions are in English, his thoughts the film's narration are in his native Wolof, the primary language of West Africa. In this way, Police Beat is an unusual portrait of an immigrant new to the United States that focuses less on the protagonist's socio-economic difficulties than on his emotional responses to American life. Written by
Really one of the most beautiful low-budget films I've ever seen.
The lead actor is very compelling, and the idea of observing American life through an authority figure who is also an immigrant is really striking. And occasionally very funny.
The film as a whole has elements of David Lynch, as well as Linklater's "Slacker." But the sensibility is really not well described through reference to other films. It's really a one-of-a-kind piece of work.
The news in the final credits that all the incidents portrayed in the film were taken from actual police files was strangely disappointing, but when I later learned that the co-writer was the author of a "Police Beat" column in the Seattle alternative weekly, it made total sense.
Honestly, some of the images here are just absolutely singular. You've never seen anything quite like it.
Congratulations to all involved.
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