The life of the rural policeman or policewoman hasn’t really changed that much over the decades. While colleagues working in big cities have to deal with very modern problems such as cybercrime, terrorism and organised crime gangs, in the countryside life generally passes by at a more lethargic pace. Days often merge into one. Small routines become the norm. This idea has often been used as the background for detective films. Either using a ‘fish out of water’ or throwing a serious crime into this calm ecosystem.
In the northern Italian village where Gigi patrols the streets, nothing much happens. The middle-aged police officer takes great care in going about his job, keeping his eagle eye on the residents of this small and sleepy community. No illegally parked car goes unnoticed. No stranger gets to evade his scrutiny. In The Adventures of Gigi the Law (Gigi la Legge), we follow him as he goes about the job of protecting his community.
The Adventures of Gigi the Law is a gently lilting film which allows its titular ‘hero’ to exude his charm and charisma. The intimacy of this study is helped by him being filmmaker Alessandro Comodin’s uncle. This allows a kind of naturalism that otherwise wouldn’t be possible. This up close and personal approach is what really makes this documentary tick. When a girl commits suicide, his rhythm is thrown off. Using elements of magical realism, The Adventures of Gigi the Law is an absorbing portrait.
The Adventures of Gigi the Law screens at IDFA.