‘My Policeman’ is an emotional experience that can move an entire theater to tears

Photo courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

The long-awaited film “My Policeman” finally came to select theaters on Oct. 21, and it greatly exceeded my expectations. 

“My Policeman” is based on the 2012 novel by Bethan Roberts and follows a younger Tom Burgess (Harry Styles), Marion Taylor (Emma Corrin) and Patrick Hazelwood (David Dawson). The film flashes between scenes in the 1950s and the 1990s when the characters are grown and retired. 

In the 90s, married and retired couple Tom and Marion welcome their old friend Patrick to live with them after he suffers from a stroke and can no longer live alone. 

However, it’s clear from the beginning that Tom wants nothing to do with Patrick and is unhappy with his new houseguest. The reason behind his hostile behavior is explored throughout the film.

The beginning of the film is ambiguous, and if you haven’t seen the trailer, it can be confusing trying to guess who is who. Fortunately, the film jumps into their backstory fairly quickly which helps to fill the gaps. 

When we first meet Marion (Corrin) in the 1950s, she is a young woman who is infatuated with policeman Tom Burgess (Styles), and the two begin to spend time together and bond over a shared love and curiosity for literature and art. Patrick (Dawson) is introduced when Tom and Marion visit him at the museum he curates. The trio soon becomes inseparable.

Tom and Marion’s relationship develops carefully and cautiously until Tom eventually asks her to marry him and she accepts his proposal. 

Then it’s revealed that Patrick and Tom have been romantically involved throughout the entire time the trio has been together and that they’ve been hiding their relationship from a mostly unsuspecting Marion.

While watching this film, you cannot help but marvel at the actors as each one brings a unique take on their character and their performances bring their characters to life. The chemistry between Styles and Dawson is undeniable as you watch Tom and Patrick’s relationship develop. 

There were multiple points throughout the film where all members of the audience were quite literally on the edge of their seats, eager to see what would happen next. Safe to say, no one was disappointed.

I was thoroughly entertained during this entire film and the directors did an excellent job of weaving scenes together to keep the storyline flowing and the audience engaged. 

The cinematography is a reason to see the movie in itself. The production was filmed throughout Europe, and several stunning scenes made my jaw drop. 

[Photo from Michael Grandage’s film “My Policeman.”]
Photo courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

The film is rated R for nudity and sexual content, which brings us to the next aspect of this movie: intimacy. The intimate scenes in this movie are filmed so beautifully, and the actors do an excellent job of creating a deep and sensual atmosphere. 

The film’s intimacy coordinator, Ben Wright, deserves major applause for crafting such delicate and passionate scenes. This extra-mile effort adds to the intensity of the relationships and the impact on its audiences.

The casting of the movie is another impressive aspect of the film. Styles, Dawson and Corrin all excel in their roles and create a genuine and heartfelt performance. Their older counterparts, Linus Roache (Tom), Rupert Everett (Patrick) and Gine McKee (Marion), are all perfectly casted. 

The older and younger versions of the trio leave little room for doubt, they all do a wonderful job of playing their mirrored roles. Roache also does a phenomenal job of replicating Styles iconic, slow dialect.

My favorite part of this movie, however, is how emotional it is. Very few movies are capable of making an entire theater experience such a wide variety of emotions simultaneously, but “My Policeman” absolutely did. The film portrays themes of secrecy, betrayal, forbidden love and heartbreak like no other and the actors deliver memorable and heartfelt performances.

As the movie explores the violence and discrimination towards gay people in the 1950s, we learn that a previous partner of Patrick’s had been beaten to death by a gang of thugs after he was outed as gay. This scene alone was enough to send the audience into a spiral of tears.

This film evoked a wide range of emotions from its audience. I felt disgust, sorrow, hopefulness, hopelessness and joy. When you learn of the ultimate betrayal, you can’t help but cringe and scrunch your nose in distaste at the actions taken by an angry and jealous lead. 

On the contrary, while watching Tom and Patrick casually pass each other on the street and subtly smile while trying to hide their attraction, I was optimistic and hoped that maybe, just maybe, things would work out for them. 

The director and actors managed to create such strong tension in certain scenes that the audience was wide-eyed as they awaited the next move. I don’t know how they were able to communicate emotion so well in this film, but I will be watching this film on repeat for months to come. 

I cannot recommend this film enough. The acting was phenomenal. The soundtrack perfectly matched the vibe of the film and the screenplay was wonderfully written. 

This is a beautifully tragic love story that explores the complexity of gay relationships in a time when gay people were prosecuted simply for their sexuality. 

“My Policeman” is now available on Amazon Prime Video, and it is an absolute must-see.

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