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Scarecrow on Seattle: POLICE BEAT

For the past few years, Scarecrow Video has been contributing reviews of movies made in the Pacific Northwest to the Seattle Office of Film + Music's e-newsletter. We're now proud to be able to share these reviews on our site as well.






Police Beat (2005)
Based on a long running column in local weekly The Stranger, Police Beat is an idiosyncratic and ambitious independent film produced by local arts organization Northwest Film Forum. The movie follows a Senegalese immigrant called Z (Pape Sidy Niang) who is working in Seattle as a bike cop. The film strings together several recreated "criminal" events from the newspaper column intermixed with Z's personal struggles. Many scenes unfold near water (especially Lake Union), extensive use is made of Capitol Hill, but nobody goes to the Pike Place Market. There are too many locations to detail here as Police Beat was shot at over 100 different spots around the city in lush, 35mm cinemascope by ace local camera guy Sean Kirby. The filmmakers also used lots of Seattle actors, non-actors and technicians. If you've been around town very long you'll undoubtedly recognize some familiar faces and scenic views. Hell, I'm even in the movie for about 20 seconds but I've got a black stocking mask over my head so you won't be able to recognize me. Police Beat is not for every taste but it has the power and ability to make a real connection with some viewers and rarely has Seattle been so beautifully captured on film.
--Spenser Hoyt


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