Saturday, November 6, 2021

Secret Police Life.

Abuse of authority, greed, and deceitful romances. Welcome to Arturo Velazco’s 90’s gritty crime-drama:  Policía Secreto ("Secret Police").

In the rough outskirts of Mexico City, 3 undercover police agents infiltrate criminals with very excessive force—consisting of various tortuous maneuvers to get “answers” & arrests. They either beat people to a bloody pulp, threaten their loved-ones and even go as far as to rob them. The presumed leader of this undercover cop group is Mendoza (Rodolfo de Anda), whom not only lacks empathy but also “justifies” his actions since he truly feels he is above the law. The same can be said about the other 2 cops: Sanchez & Julio (Manuel Benitez & Sergio Sanchez). After the trio are done abusing their authority, they unwind at a local nightclub where they have some drinks and drool at the erotic dancers there. The newest dancer Carolina (Lorena Herrera) stands out to Mendoza big time and he immediately falls for her. Carolina then begins to entertain Mendoza since he showers with her money, gifts & sex, but quite frankly she’s not really into him at all. Mendoza loves Carolina so much that he seeks out to have lots of money in order to buy a house for him and Carolina to live in, so then he & his 2 goons begins to rob wealthy people they know of. When Mendoza’s superiors hear about their abuse & criminal activities, he wants them out of the force & arrested and this all intertwines with Mendoza being rejected by Carolina! 

Policía Secreto was written & directed by Arturo Velazco and if you’re familiar with his work, then you’ll expect a lot of raw & gritty energy in his movies. This of course all stems from the types of stories Velazco was telling which were realistic dilemmas amongst the Mexican working-class & authority. Velazco also knew that he would need to film his gritty realistic movies somewhere not so glamorous & not always in a studio, so he filmed in rough areas in Mexico to make his movies look authentic and he of course would cast talent (sometimes non-actors) that he knew would get into their roles perfectly.  

Rodolfo de Anda is of course the best actor in Policia Secreto since he plays his role so wonderfully & realistically and that’s what I absolutely like about Rodolfo because he truly got into whatever character he played and when it is an antagonist, he goes all out and becomes an actual bad guy. Here of course Rodolfo plays a horrendous man of the law who only cares about himself and when he thinks he’s “found” love, he becomes a much worse person in order to fulfill his desires. Lorena Herrera also stands out in the movie since she has always played characters like this and by this I mean a deceitful, beautiful woman who only thinks of herself and her gains. Good looks & charms however attract the wrong kind of people and in this movie, Lorena’s character succumbs to someone who won’t give up on her no matter what. 

As mentioned beforehand, the raw & gritty energy that Velazco brings in his movies come from the type of stories he’s telling, the actors he casts to portray them and the most important of all is where he’d go to film. Velazco would film his movies in rough working-class areas in Mexico because filming somewhere rather “nice” and/or in a studio would just be a bore & not feel authentic at all. In Policía Secreto, he filmed in a working-class area in Mexico City where you’ll see outdoor markets filled with lots of people walking in every single direction, lots of dirt & patchy roads and the nightclub setting is of course a real sleazy looking place with real-looking clientele inside. 

I first watched Policía Secreto on Cinelatino 9 years ago and enjoyed the heck out of it since it is a movie that despite its low-budget & bits of cheesiness, it still manages to tell an intriguing story of authorities abusing their power & falling under the spells of deceitful women. It is like a pulp story come to life basically, just without the “glamour” that most tend to have. Director Arturo Velazco is mostly known for the cult hit "La Banda De Los Panchitos", but when you take a look at the rest of his filmography, you’ll see he’s actually made many other great movies that are must sees and Policía Secreto is amongst those to see.