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Roubaix, Police Department, Ordinary Business

Roubaix, Police Department, Ordinary Business

A teenage runaway. A stabbing spree during a Christmas dinner that leaves multiple casualties. A series of sexual assaults in a subway station. This is the “ordinary business” that police in the working class northern French town of Roubaix deal with over the course of several months. We follow their investigations into these crimes — even as they are hampered by false accusations, the complexities of family relationships, and sometimes the ineptitude of the police themselves.

But when an elderly woman is murdered in her bed, detectives from Roubaix’s central police station quickly realize they’re dealing with eye-witnesses whose story is designed to cover up more than it reveals. (The murder case was the inspiration for the 2019 dramatic feature Roubaix, une lumière (Oh Mercy!), which premiered at Cannes.) As their story falls apart, a darker truth is revealed.

Part of director Mosco Boucault’s “Police Investigations” series, ROUBAIX, POLICE DEPARTMENT, ORDINARY BUSINESS, is raw and compelling — watching it we can easily forget this is documentary and not fiction.

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