The searing story of President Duterte's bloody campaign against drug dealers and addicts in the Philippines, told with unprecedented and intimate access to both sides of the war - the ...
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The searing story of President Duterte's bloody campaign against drug dealers and addicts in the Philippines, told with unprecedented and intimate access to both sides of the war - the Manila police, and an ordinary family from the slum. Shot in the style of a thriller, this observational film combines the look and feel of a narrative feature film with a real life revelatory journalistic investigation into a campaign of killings. The film uncovers a murky world where crime, drugs and politics meet in a deathly embrace - and reveal that although the police have been publicly ordered to stop extra-judicial killings, the deaths continue.
Drugs ruin many people's lives. Making them illegal turns the supply chain criminal and arguably multiplies the damage. In the Phillipines, an endemic of drug-fuelled crime by been addressed by the President effectively deciding to eliminate (through the use of armed police) anyone involved in the drug trade in any way, including low-end users. It's horrific, and while this documentary follows a supposed attempt to improve police practice, the officers' commitment to desisting from murder always seems wafer thin and a brief period of relative calm is ended with a resumption of a quite literal war on drugs. The shocking disregard for human life matches the stupidity of the policy; footage of an actual (possibly police-delivered) killing adds to the sense of immediacy. In a just world, President Duterte would be the one facing justice; but even he does not deserve the fate he hands out to those whose real crime is simply to be poor.
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