I went to see LA Confidential the other night. Preceding the film was a Teacher Training Agency advert featuring David Attenborough's teacher, extolling the virtues of teaching. It was glossy and clever, very 1950s' Britain and very cosy.
But I was keen to see the film. Wonderful stuff. The Los Angeles police department in the 1950s - a nightmare world of murder, corruption, drugs, violence, pornography and racism. What unimaginable pressures there were on the young police officer! What stresses! Half-way though the film there was a street scene with a billboard in the background. On the billboard there was a glossy recruitment poster advertising the LAPD, with a photo of a reassuringly friendly officer and words inviting people to join this proud profession . . .
ROBIN PEEL School of Humanities Cultural Interpretation University of Plymouth, Devon