Patriotic heroes on screen; Strategy of demonstrating power: Reading police’s images in the winning films of the Police Movie Festival 2019


This article analyzes the winning films at Indonesia’s 2019 Police Movie Festival “Together We Are Strong.” This film festival was organized by the Public Relations of the Indonesian National Police, which is allegedly one of the police’s efforts to control the media. We argue that the festival became the vehicle for police to build positive images since the media published some violent cases perpetrated by the police against civilians; or negative sentiment toward the police because several police officers held strategic positions in government. In order to find out the positive image raised by the police, we analyze the police figures in these film festival winners. The analyses include the basic ideas, characters, setting, iconography, and narrative events of the police figures. The results show that the film festival winners portrayed police as patriotic heroes who defend the country from crimes that threaten the nation’s integrity through genre analysis. According to the discursive practice in film, police’s images as patriotic heroes become an attempt by the police to perform their power in socio-political life, especially in Indonesia.