Written for RAF News October 2022
Three lives are entwined in Brighton in the 1950s, a love triangle forming against a backdrop of criminalised homosexuality.
My Policeman jumps between the meeting of a young couple and their lives together decades later, retired in a coastal humdrum town. This is disturbed however by the presence of an old friend, now disabled and in need of care, unravelling dark secrets from their past.
Tom (Harry Styles) is the titular copper, unusually innocent and curious as noted by museum curator and amateur artist Patrick (David Dawson) who offers to draw his portrait after a chance meeting, marking the beginnings of a peculiar friendship. It is not long after this that Tom meets Marion (Emma Corrin) a plain but excitable teacher who is smitten but fears that the feeling isn’t reciprocated. This is part of the story mind, and not simply because of Styles’ acting which kills all chemistry that could have been.
In the present, Tom and Marion (now played by Linus Roache and Gina McKee) are in a loveless marriage that has become a stilted and depressing affair, highlighted by the arrival of old friend Patrick (Rupert Everett). As dull as it is bleak, these performances sadly don’t draw anymore interest than the cast of characters in the past.
The subdued love story is rather ordinary until some information is uncovered that sheds new light on this group, explaining why their lives are so fraught and joyless now. However, this isn’t enough to make the story interesting or the characters sympathetic.
As the excitement fades for the new lovers, it does for the film also, as we trudge through the sad reality of unexciting compromise and emptiness.