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[HBO] “We Own This City”: A return to Baltimore under very high tension

[HBO] “We Own This City”: A return to Baltimore under very high tension

David Simon and George Pelecanos back in Baltimore with We Own This Cityto tell us in an exciting HBO miniseries about the downfall of an anti-crime squad that has gradually descended into crime.

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20 years later The Wirethis American series considered one of the major works of the genre, David Simon et Goerge Pellecanos come back with We Own This Citya miniseries on behalf of the channel HBO.
The opportunity to dive back into the city of Baltimore and more specifically into the heart of its police to discover the methods and abuses that have led to numerous arrests of corrupt police officers.
But in reality the story is much more complicated than that, because beyond the facts of corruption, the series obviously paints a broader portrait of this city seen through the prism of its Police and its hierarchy, going back to to the mayor of the city.

WE-OWN-THIS-CITY afficheIn a sober staging, the directors once again offer a story that aims to be as realistic as possible, featuring the testimonies of corrupt police officers, recounting during their interrogation the way in which the “Gun Trace Task Force” worked, n not hesitating, when necessary, to step outside the scope of his duties, to show violence, manipulation or lies.
On several levels of temporality, the series tells in a very explanatory way the methods used by these cops, more or less covered by a hierarchy which did not want to know anything, and which waited above all for the figures and the results of its men responsible for carrying out a maximum of arrests, seizures of weapons or drugs in order to make the streets of Baltimore calmer, and thus reduce the number of homicides.

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A series which is watched with a lot of curiosity and also bewilderment at times in the face of the impunity shown by these representatives of the police with the methods of thugs
The story also shows the criminal drift of these police officers, so to speak left to their own devices, and who did not hesitate to put wads of cash or kilos of drugs in their pockets when seizures were made from traffickers.

At the head of this band of crooked police officers, we find the actor Jon Bernthalspotted a few years ago in the series The Walking Dead, a colorful character, with a steel mind who will deny until the end his involvement in acts of corruption. Next to him are Darrell Britt Gibson, Josh Charles and a whole slew of very good actors embodying African-American police officers who have passed “on the other side of the fence”.

A series that probably does not have the strength The Wire – which was a project of greater ambition and scope -, however we will appreciate this quick return to Baltimore to find the talent of Simon et Pelecanos in the service of a captivating scenario, to understand how an anti-crime brigade was able to sink little by little into delinquency. A classic and intimate story of police officers frustrated by low salaries, attracted by easy money and who, by dint of a feeling of omnipotence, let their guard down and ended up falling.

Benoit RICHARD

We Own This City
American series created by David Simon and George Pelecanos
With Jon Bernthal, Wunmi Mosaku, Jamie Hector.
Genre: Drama, Crime, Thriller
6 episodes of approximately 60 minutes
First broadcast on HBO / OCS France from 25 avril 2022

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