The Life

The Life

Vancouver’s notorious downtown East Side is home to thousands of poor and disenfranchised men and women where crime and drug addiction are rampant and where cops often just look the other way. Except for members of the Odd Squad, Constables Arnie (Bruce Greenwood) and Tony (Brian Markinson). Fed up with traditional police policies, they embark on a radical course of action armed with a video camera. The two beat cops put the area’s drug addicts on tape to try and change both how the community views the addicts and the addicts’ views of themselves. The project soon earns the scorn of their police department and threatens their careers.

The narrative interweaves the stories of the cops and the addicts as the video strategy initially proves destructive, resulting in the death of a female addict. After a moving funeral on the mean streets, Arnie and Tony forge on despite mounting criticism. In the end, two of the addicts check into rehab, a small victory but a powerful one for two cops who risked their reputations to save those they could.

  • Director: Lynne Stopkewich
  • Writers: Alan Di Fiore, Chris Haddock
  • Stars: Bruce Greenwood, Brian Markinson and Alisen Down