Film Review: Cop Secret (2021)

Cop Secret (or Leynilögga) is the Icelandic gay cop spoof movie you didn’t know you needed

“What’s up Bussi boy?”

What does the former goalkeeper for Iceland’s men’s football team do in his spare time? Why, make films of course, including the video for Iceland’s 2012 Eurovision, and has now released his feature debut which is a buddy cop movie with a queer bent. Hannes Þór Halldórsson is naturally my new hero and Cop Secret ain’t half bad as an occasionally wryly amusing comedy.

Bússi and Hörđur are rival hotshot detectives from neighbouring city districts in Reykjavík who, in time-honoured fashion, can’t stand each other and yet are forced to work together when a series of bank robberies in which nothing seems to be stolen perplexes everyone. But as Hörđur is a pan-sexual muscle Mary and Bússi is a closet case, their animosity can’t disguise their attraction.

Truth be told, it’s not a queer love story for the ages. The gay subplot does feel a little lightweight but that’s only really in keeping with everything else in the film, it’s all very tongue-in-cheek. It doesn’t quite go for all-out spoof but rather an affectionate send-up of the genre tropes and so it is something that generates lots of chuckles rather than out-and-out belly laughs, or at least that’s how it was for me.

The running jokes are good (sleepy Reykjavík as a crime nexus, Björn Hlynur Haraldsson’s villain insisting on talking in Trump-accented English). And Auðunn Blöndal and Egill Einarsson are great fun as the paired up cops, neither of whom are quite able to relinquish the alpha role (which results in one of the funniest scenes, where the consequences of their maverick actions are recited). If not groundbreaking, the self-aware Cop Secret is certainly highly watchable as an antidote to the continued proliferation of cop show and films that stick rigidly to the formula. 

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