Police Beat


Bottom 40% of all time (see others with this rank)

Festival Year

2005 (click here to see all competition films from this year)


Dramatic Competition


Pape Sidy Niang, Anna Oxygen, Eric Breedlove, Sara Hartlett

Non-Cast Credits

Robinson Devor, Charles Mudede, Michael Seiwerath, Mark Winitsky, Jeremy Meyer, Alexis Ferris, Jeffrey Brown, Sean Kirby, Joe Shapiro, Etta Lilienthal, Doris Black


What is it like for a Muslim West African immigrant to become a Seattle policeman and fall in love with a white woman who doesn't believe in monogamy? Robinson Devor returns to Sundance with this gentle, delightfully poetic, and beautifully visualized rumination about the fragmentation and disorientation born out of longing and cultural differences.

Z, a Senegalese bicycle cop, patrols his beat for seven days and six nights while his girlfriend, Rachel, is out of town on a camping trip with another man. Distracted by Rachel's absence, Z pedals around in a trancelike state, reflecting on their disparities and his growing feeling of love, while policing a string of mundane and bizarre criminal situations. As time passes, he becomes increasingly anxious about losing Rachel's affection but realizes that to embrace her is to embrace a way of life that is entirely foreign, and in some ways, humiliating to him.

Cleverly steering around realism, Devor creates a unique and dreamlike world where each character unfurls in unanticipated ways. Z, a man who might normally crumble under the suffocating scrutiny of the law, is able to ponder his issues within the vast liberties of his life as the law. Precisely drawn, Police Beat conjures a sense of what it is like to be a tourist inside one's own world.


Shari Frilot (see other films reviewed by the same reviewer)

Film Takes Pace.