Forget what you’ve heard about “Wrong Cops” (if you’ve heard anything at all). It’s getting loads of crappy reviews fresh out of the oven, and frankly it’s unfairly distributed. Director/writer Quentin Dupieux (Rubber) has a sense of dry humor that is often missed and passed up recently, for a more pretentious, thought-invoking script. Sometimes it’s a necessary break to sit back and laugh at something crude or just plain stupid. “Wrong Cops” is creative and a pleasant deviation from the norm.
Based on several cops who have become bored in their crimeless town and are simply looking for things to do, the freedom of authority mixed with the overwhelming monotonous town has led the police force to take on the personalities of frat boys. They end up picking on each other, selling weed to children, and blatantly bullying the citizens they are presumed to protect. While there’s lack of any specific plot line, it’s easy to get lost in each character’s story as they attempt to make something of their otherwise useless jobs. The problems ensue as their activities intertwine in a web of torment.
“Wrong Cops” has a strong , yet outlandish cast which creates a great comedy vibe for those who warrant it. Although there are no lead roles, Steve Little (Reno 911) steals the show as Sunshine, a cop who seems to be a key target for bullying. After his fellow officer, Duke (Mark Burnham), leaves a dying body with him, Sunshine has a sense of sympathy for the man he’s been asked to kill, he even makes sure to play the man music while he shops for a shovel to bury him with. It’s as silly as silly gets, and Little manages to create a somewhat relatable character amidst all the insensitive absurdity. Ultimately left with the dying guy (Daniel Quinn-“Rubber”), Eric Judor, plays Officer Rough, an eye-patch wearing cop who just wants his song produced. He and Quinn join forces to create a repetitive techno song that is finally, yet hilariously turned down by a music producer (Kurt Fuller). Arden Myrin (Mad TV) plays Shirley, the only female cop in the film, and is not to be underestimated. More insensitive than the other characters, Shirley is deliciously cruel and uses her charm and brilliance to outsmart the boys.
While some of Dupieux’s writing definitely provides “LOL” laughter, there are some weak points. Mark Burnham plays Duke, a cop that sells weed out of rats stomachs and commonly abuses citizens, but as a reoccurring role, his character is underdeveloped and I have no idea why he is often found in his underwear in his apartment with different men. This is where Marilyn Manson comes in playing David Delores Frank, and I must tell you it’s brilliant. Perhaps I’m biased as a fan of anything Marilyn Manson, but I almost didn’t recognize him as the clueless bystander who is unfortunately dragged to Duke’s house to listen to horrid music as Duke rages in his underwear. Again, I’m not sure what the motive is here, but it’s safe to say Manson’s confused attitude may not just be him acting (which he does surprisingly well).
In the attempt to create more dry humor, Dupieux writes in some hateful material towards the gay community. When the subject of gay porn is presented, the characters act as if it is by far the worst choice a human being can make. Dupieux even goes as far as to write in the word “faggot” a few times, used negatively, which should be considered a demeaning and hateful term. The LGBT community has a come a long way in the past years to surpass this type of discrimination and it’s unfortunate that filmmakers continue to exploit it. It’s an unnecessary type of humor in a movie that is funny without it.
Overall, it’s worth a watch. It’s silly with a good cast, some questionable values and not for the easily offended. It even has a huge surprise ending that left me in mouth-gaping shock. Dupieux’s work is not for everyone, but has substantial material for those that laugh at the otherwise detestable.
Make sure to check out the trailer: