ACAB – All Cops Are Bastards

ACAB – All Cops Are Bastards
Directed by Stefano Sollima
Produced by Marco Chimenz, Giovanni Stabilini, Riccardo Tozzi
Screenplay by Barbara Petronio, Daniele Cesarano, Leonardo Valenti
Based on ACAB by Carlo Bonini
Starring Pierfrancesco Favino
Filippo Nigro
Marco Giallini
Music by Mokadelic
Cinematography Paolo Carnera
Edited by Patrizio Marone
Babe Film
Rai Cinema
Distributed by 01 Distribution
Release dates
  • 25 January 2012 (2012-01-25) (Italy)
Running time
112 minutes
Country Italy
Language Italian

ACAB – All Cops Are Bastards is a 2012 Italian drama film directed by Stefano Sollima.


The film was the debut feature from director Stefano Sollima, who had previously directed TV crime show Romanzo Criminale.[1]


The film focuses on the life of a group of riot control force policemen and their life coping with 'cleansing' stadiums from Ultras, public demonstrations, evictions and everyday family life.

A new recruit, Adriano Costantini, joins the squad for its 'high paying' salary, which he needs to support his mum. The two of them live in a small apartment from which they'll soon be evicted and, even though they had been assigned a public housing, that has been occupied by an immigrant family and is therefore inhabitable. Adriano is prone to violence and often prefers the use of force even in situations where it is unnecessary, additionally fueled by the anger he feels over his mother's situation.

Mazinga is the leader of the squad and father of a rebellious teenager who starts to hang out with a neo fascist group and is embarrassed by his father's job. Mazinga gets stabbed during a confrontation at the stadium and loses control of one of his legs, prompting a manhunt for the culprit from his colleagues.

Negro ("Nigger"), another member of the group is going through a difficult divorce and is denied visitations with his daughter.

Cobra is the most dedicated member of the team. He believes in protecting his 'bothers' in arms above anything else, no matter the errors they may have committed. He believes in the job he's doing but sometimes the lines between protecting his fellow policemen and respecting the law get blurred. He may be one of the most violent member of the squada, also facing trial for beating a supporter during a football match.

The life of those four men unravel throughout the movie, while in the background the tensions between the police force, the soccer hooligans ("Ultras"), the immigrants and the fascists reaches its peak.



The music was composed and performed by the Italian post-rock band Mokadelic and was recorded entirely at the famous Forum Music Village studios in Rome. The soundtrack contains 80's and modern rock hits like "Seven Nation Army" by The White Stripes, "A.C.A.B." by The 4-Skins, "Where Is My Mind?" by Pixies, "Police On My Back" by The Clash, "New Dawn Fades" by Joy Division and "Snow" by The Chemical Brothers.

Critical response

Variety called it "slick, with a driving rhythm and plenty of action", but was troubled by the way it celebrated sadism and vigilantism.[1] Cinealliance likewise found it powerful, with an intelligent and story effective direction, and despite fascist overtones.[2] Filmosphere gave it 3.5/5.[3]

Awards and nominations

See also


  1. 1 2 Weissberg, Jay (Feb 26, 2012). "ACAB: All Cops Are Bastards". Variety.
  2. Yvernault, Manuel. "A.C.A.B (All Cops are bastards)". Cinealliance. Retrieved 13 July 2012.
  3. Gilli, Nicolas. "A.C.A.B. - All Cops Are Bastards". Filmosphere. Retrieved 13 July 2012.

External links

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