Poliss, or Polisse in French, adopts its name from a slang word used by children when referring to the Police. Written and directed by cult-French star Maiwenn, who gave herself the part of reporter Melissa, the film follows a group of police officers working within the Parisian child-protection unit who attempt to rid Paris of its child abusers. Upon arriving at the precinct, Melissa meets her team. Made up of a group of 30-something professionals, all with different motives and reasons for working for the Police force, she shadows them while they move from case to case, highlighting a disorganised but dedicated team.
Arguably the most prominent character, Fred (Joeystaar) is another officer in the PCPU and takes an instant disliking to Melissa as she hovers around each crime scene, barely saying two words a piece but this hyper-sensitivity to his nature is soon exposed as their two personalities collide.
Rather than focusing on the lives of each individual character, Maiwenn chooses to move the narrative forward in conjuncture with the cases the team has to deal with. She adds touches of originality to scenes by allowing the characters to banter with each other while they try and solve some of the most heinous crimes in France.
Interestingly, humour and comedy are two of the main elements that allow the film to work so well. With three or four story-arcs driving the film along, all comes to fruition in the last sequence with tempers flaring, allowing for one explosive finale. One reviewer described Polisse as being like a whole season of The Wire. With such esteemed compliments, this is a film not to be missed. It would almost be a crime…
Watch the trailer for Polisse here: