My Policeman: 9 Similar Movies You Must Watch Next

Image Credit: Parisa Taghizadeh/Amazon Prime Video

Based on the 2012 eponymous novel by Bethan Roberts, Amazon Prime’s ‘My Policeman‘ is a period romance drama movie directed by Michael Grandage. Set in Britain in the 1950s, the story centers upon
Tom Burgess 
(Harry Styles), a police officer who falls in love with Marion Taylor (Emma Corin), a schoolteacher, and marries her. However, when Tom starts to have a same-sex affair with an artist named Patrick (David Dawson), he tries to hide his sexuality from the world, which causes a strain on his relationship with Patrick and his wife. When Marion finds out about them, things take a dramatic turn.

‘My Policeman’ is a beautifully complex tale that sheds light on a time when LGBTQ+ relationships were illegal in Britain. Besides portraying society’s view on queer relationships, the film delves into the mindset of people who wish to live their truth and be in same-sex relationships while leading the so-called “normal” life. It shows the innately grey nature of humans who take the most drastic steps in the name of love. If you like watching ‘My Policeman’ and are looking for more such films, we’ve got you covered.

9. A Moment in the Reeds (2017)

Directed by Mikko Mäkelä, ‘A Moment in the Reeds’ is a Finnish film that follows two men named, Leevi and Tareq. While Leevi is a university student who has returned for the summer to help his estranged father renovate the lakehouse, Tareq is an architect who fled from Syria due to war and is currently seeking asylum in Finland. Soon, the paths of the two men intersect.

As they learn about each other’s lives, Tareq and Leevi form a special connection. The movie has a very mellow vibe, and the characters convey more with few words. Patrick’s defiance of society in ‘My Policeman’ resembles Leevi’s defiance of his father in ‘A Moment in the Reeds.’ While Tom and Patrick share the same passion as Leevi and Tareq, the former lacks empathy compared to the latter.

8. Firebird (2021)

Based on Sergei Fetisov’s memoir, ‘The Story of Roman,’ ‘Firebird’ is a romantic war drama movie directed by Peeter Rebane and is his debut directorial feature. The film is set in the 70s on the Soviet Air Base during the Cold War. It follows a young soldier named Sergey, who forms a passionate relationship with a fighter pilot named Roman, and a fellow soldier named Luisa during the war. As Sergey and Roman grow closer, a senior officer in the army receives a report about their relationship. Things turn sour between the two as the situation gets complicated when the war is at its peak.

It is interesting to note that although ‘Firebird’ and ‘My Policeman’ are set in different countries and periods, the stories share multiple parallels. In many ways, the dynamic between Sergey and Roman shares a semblance with Tom and Patrick’s relationship. For instance, the characters must keep their affair a secret because of the laws. The films also carry undertones of aggression, anger, and even jealousy, keeping the audience hooked until the end.

7. Free Fall (2013)

Originally titled ‘Freier Fall,’ ‘Free Fall’ is a German film directed by Stephan Lacant. The movie is about Marc, a policeman with a pregnant girlfriend, who falls in love with a fellow officer named Kay Engel. The growing closeness between them gives rise to numerous problems, such as bullying from other team members, and Marc’s life begins to crumble.

Although the 2013 movie is much less complex than ‘My Policeman,’ the two have the same core premise, and their characters are exposed to the same moral dilemma. We also see how law enforcement officials look at same-sex relationships in an unflattering light, forcing the main characters to be closeted. Above and beyond this, both movies show how lonely it gets for the characters as they fight to be themselves.

6. Holding the Man (2015)

Based on the eponymous 1995 memoir by Timothy Conigrave, ‘Holding the Man’ is an Australian film directed by Neil Armfield. The narrative chronicles the life of Timothy and John, who fall in love in high school, and portrays their 15-year-old relationship. What starts as a simple date between the two boys develops into something so much more profound that the two become inseparable and endure almost anything coming their way.

Unlike ‘My Policeman,’ this film is much less intense, yet can leave you with a heavy heart. One of the common facets between the two movies is society’s ignorance towards LGBTQ+ relationships. While in ‘My Policeman,’ Tom’s wife tries to convince him that Patrick is ruining their relationship, in ‘Holding the Man,’ John’s father plans to take his son to a psychologist. In this way, it is truly tragic for the characters as it leads them to make radical decisions that affect them for the rest of their lives.

5. Carol (2015)

Set in the 1950s, ‘Carol’ is a period romance drama film based on the novel, ‘The Price of Salt’ by Patricia Highsmith. It follows Therese (Rooney Mara), a passionate photographer, as she crosses paths with an older woman named Carol (Cate Blanchett). Soon, their serendipitous encounter develops into something more. However, Carol’s life is amid a family crisis, which affects both women and their relationship’s future.

While the movie possesses several similar tropes to ‘My Policeman,’ it is also vastly different when it comes to familial relationships of queer women. This is predominantly due to the inherent patriarchy but also because of how Carol and Therese tackle problems compared to Tom and Patrick. Another notable difference in the films is Carol’s husband’s behavior towards her and Tom’s wife’s behavior towards him. In the former case, there’s more aggression, whereas in the latter case, there’s a sense of submission. However, both narratives hook the audiences, as they wonder what might happen until the end.

4. Maurice (1987)

‘Maurice’ is a British period film that follows the strenuous relationship between two boys, Clive (Hugh Grant) and Maurice (James Wilby), as they try to accept their sexuality while living in a society repulsed by same-sex relationships. Directed by James Ivory and based on E. M. Forster’s 1971 novel, it portrays the inner conflicts of gay men and the deep-seated issues they face due to the conditioning of the people around them.

The insecurities and vulnerabilities of Maurice and Clive are in many ways similar to Tom and Patrick in ‘My Policeman.’ These emotions, among various others, form the core narrative of the movies, and the audience witnesses the characters’ journeys as they battle their inner demons.

3. God’s Own Country (2017)

Written and directed by Francis Lee, ‘God’s Own Country’ is a British film set on a farm in Yorkshire. Johnny is a young farmer who lives with his father and doesn’t have much life outside the farm. He is rough and aggressive and spends his time drinking. When a Romanian worker, Gheorghe, arrives, his mundane life transforms.

The 2017 movie primarily focuses on the two men exploring their sexuality and discovering each other in new ways. The sexual encounters between them act as a medium for the characters to learn about each other while paving the way for a different emotional awakening. The passion and the tenderness remind the audience of the encounters between Tom and Patrick from ‘My Policeman.’

2. Moonlight (2016)

Moonlight‘ is an adaptation of the unpublished semi-autobiographical play, ‘In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue’ by Tarell Alvin McCraney. The Oscar-winning film chronicles the life of a young boy named Chiron in three stages. It depicts how he grows up trying to understand and come to terms with his sexuality while battling the issues of the various stages of life. In a few subtle ways, Chiron’s behavioral mannerisms as an adult are analogous to Patrick’s.

However, there are several differences in tonality between ‘Moonlight’ and ‘My Policeman.’ While Chiron’s mother openly criticizes her son for being gay, Marion’s disdain toward Tom becomes slightly more passive as the years pass by. Although Chiron and Tom’s worlds are vastly different, their need for acceptance, even in adulthood, gives them a common ground.

1. Brokeback Mountain (2005)

Directed by Ang Lee, ‘Brokeback Mountain’ is a romantic drama film that revolves around two cowboys, Ennis (Heath Ledger) and Jack (Jake Gyllenhaal), who meet on a ranch one summer, form a deep connection and explore their sexuality. As the two part ways after a brief period, the narrative follows their lives wherein they meet a few times a year to reignite their passion and relive their memories. The neo-Western drama film is based on Annie Proulx’s 1997 short story of the same name.

Set between the 60s and the 80s, the movie depicts how the men are torn between wanting to be with each other and appeasing society’s way of life. Like numerous films around this subject, ‘Brokeback Mountain’ and ‘My Policeman’ embody a somber tone reflecting their difficulties. The characters’ need to hide their true selves, the looming threat of exposure, and the constant feeling of being caged are depicted impeccably in both movies. The authentic performances and innate realism immerse the audience into their worlds and share a tiny glimpse of what it’s like to be gay.

Read More: Best LGBTQ+ Movies of All Time