Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Imperial Swordsman
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
  Cop Secret Iceland, The Nice Land?
Year: 2021
Director: Hannes Thor Halldorsson
Stars: Audunn Blondal, Eigill Einarsson, Stennun Olina Thorsteindottir, Vivian Olafsdottir, Sverrir Thor Sverrisson, Bjorn Hlynur Haraldsson, Juliana Sarah Gunnarsdottir, Steinthor Hroar Steinthorsson, Gunnar Hansson, Jon Gnarr
Genre: Comedy, Action, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: On the mean streets of Reykjavik, another crime has taken place, and as the culprit makes good their escape on a motorcycle, there is only one man who can take them down: Bussi (Audunn Blondal), the greatest cop in the history of Iceland. A man of action who never backs down and never sticks to the rules, as his partner Klemenz (Sverrir Thor Sverrisson) cowers in the passenger seat next to him, he puts pedal to metal and races off after the thief across the urban highways narrowly avoiding any mishaps on the way as he swigs from his hip flask, for a little kick. But what if there was someone else on the force who was just as adept?

Step forward Hordur (Eigill Einarsson), into whose jurisdiction the criminal speeds, and he tells Bussi he'll take it from here. Bristling at losing his catch, our hero throws caution to the wind and gets back in his police car to rush onwards, ending up at the familiar cop thriller surroundings of a warehouse for an equally familiar shootout. Well, you get the idea, Reykjavik's streets aren't mean at all, indeed it's regularly voted the safest city in the world, and that was the joke here, what if you set a high octane action blockbuster in Iceland, where car chases and gunfights don't really happen? It would need a more substantial joke than that, granted.

Just as well there was more to Cop Secret, or Leynillogga as it was called in its native land. Equally sending up and revelling in the cliches, director Hannes Thor Halldorsson, working on the script with stars Blondal, Sverrisson, Einarsson and writer Nina Pederson, introduced an element that was certainly present in many an eighties and nineties action flick, if rarely acted upon: homosexuality. Ever had the impression all those muscular, sweaty men may be contemplating the love that dare not speak its name, not in those sorts of movies, anyway? Here was the story that allowed them catharsis, as Bussi comes to admit he has the hots for his professional rival Hordur.

But was this a joke, or was it a twist? Bussi may be a walking cliché, but that gay part of him is not one of those, and it made him a lot more intriguing even as the other aspects of the plot veered so close to the hackneyed that you would be wondering whether these guys actually really wanted to create an unironic eighties action throwback and the only method they could find to do so was to add the same sex attraction for novelty. Yet even as you suspected the motives, you had to admit their love of the ridiculous in these sources was channelled into a movie that operated surprisingly well on a sincere level, and Bussi coming to terms with his sexuality was not treated as a gag, more something that will enhance his life.

He does have a girlfriend who demands to know why he is paying less and less attention to her, but this was no misogynist effort as an eighties item might have been, where the woman was merely present to get kidnapped or worse, murdered (who are we kidding, that trope is alive and well), as she ends up being perfectly understanding. There was a female villain, but seemingly in the interests of equal opportunities in casting, as the finale took place at a Women's Football World Cup Qualifier between Iceland and England that the whole country is invested in (the director was a goalkeeper for the men's national side). The main bad guy, ex-supermodel Rikki (Bjorn Hlynur Haraldsson), had a habit of speaking English to his henchmen and antagonists alike in a running joke that may be funnier if you were Icelandic, but the appealing thing about Cop Secret was you could watch it in the spirit of action nostalgia and just as easily in the spirit of progressive entertainment, it succeeded nicely as both. Music by Kristjan Sturla Bjarnason.

[Cop Secret had its UK premiere at LFF on October 6th 2021.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 1621 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Enoch Sneed
  Louise Hackett
Darren Jones
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M


Last Updated: