This was the first film I saw of the St. Louis International Film Festival. You can also watch it on HULU right now.
This is a great documentary. The NYC police department is the gold standard and sets the model for most police departments to follow. This movie follows the #NYPD12. These brave cops are standing up to ILLEGAL practices of the NYC PD. A second story line follows Pedro Hernandez's fight to get acquitted of false attempted murder charges.
This story needs to be shared. We as the public need to demand an independent monitor of the police. Police policing police will never work.
The establishing shots of NYC are gorgeous. This isn't Stephen Maing's first documentary and it shows how good he is at his craft.
The screening I went to had a Q & A with Stephen Maing afterwards. There was a single scene somewhat tossed into the movie that had some footage of officers with blue lives matter flags and the blue lives matter Punisher logos on their flak jackets. I asked Mr. Maing about why he included this scene, since it didn't really advance the message much. He was puzzled by my question and hadn't noticed the scene in 100+ viewings. I thought it was commentary on how police often stick up for other police because they feel they are attacked. The punisher is a MURDEROUS VIGILANTLY who kills outside of the law. Any symbolism of him used by the police is inexcusable! Just ask the Catlettsburg, KY police department. Mr. Maing asked me what I thought about the scene, when he realized he didn't recognize the scene. That was a pretty big moment, to get a message that the director wasn't fully aware of.
Watch this movie! If you know of a group that should see a screening of it, get in touch with the production company. Stephen Maing stressed that he wants people to see this and is happy to work on setting up screenings.