Movie Analysis: Frank Serpico

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If the name Serpico sounds familiar, it may be remembered from a movie. Frank Serpico is portrayed in the 1973 movie, “Serpico” starring Al Pacino. This movie may be loved by many but it’s important to realize that its characters are real men and the story line is very real. Although most police officers work very hard to do their jobs within ethical standards of the law, it is often not hard to find some type of corruption within a department. Who is the real Frank Serpico? According to the New York Times, Serpico was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1936. He longed to be a police officer from an early age and dreamed of wearing the uniform. When Frank turned 18 he joined the United States Army and traveled abroad. Stationed in Korea he served two years before returning to the United States. Upon returning he joined the New York Police Department in 1959. While serving on the New York Police Department, he discovered that there was much corruption and he was horrified. He refused to take part in the bribes and other corruptive behavior and began to mention it to the higher ranking officials at the police headquarters and the city hall. He gave names, dates, places, and other information that would be important for his case. Due to whistle blowing and his refusal to participate in such corrupt behaviors, he was disliked by his fellow officers and some of the people within the community. “Not only did he consistently refuse to take bribes for looking the other way, he risked his own safety to expose those who did” (Americans Who Tell the Truth, 2014). Serpico did not blow the whistle by himself. A friend on the same department, David Durk was also frustrated and vowed to help Serpico. While working for the New York Police Departm... ... middle of paper ... ..., Frank Serpico is a hero and the outcomes of the way that he left the force should not have happened the way that it did. Police officers should not be held above the law and their actions and behaviors should be those that are legal. Corruption within departments is something that the officers on the higher end of the force should watch for and have a system to detect. If an officer knows that someone is in fact, participating in corrupt behavior they should not fear doing what is right and letting the designated individual know. Frank Serpico is depicted in the movie, “Serpico” starring Al Pacino. Although this movie has won many awards, it’s important to remember that the characters within it are based from real characters. Frank Serpico is just one example of a person who decided to stand up for what is right and suffered very real consequences for doing so.

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