Bon Cop, Bad Cop

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February 6, 2011
Quebec Culture through Cinema

Bon Cop, Bad Cop is a rather dramatic action-comedy film. The movie begins when a body is found lying across a billboard that denotes the Ontario-Quebec border. Since the body is split evenly between the two different jurisdictions, police officers from both providences are called. David Bouchard, a detective for the Surete de Quebec, and Martin Ward, a detective for the Ontario Provincial Police are both put on the case. Despite their obvious differences and prejudices towards one another the two must teamed up to solve the case together. Bon Cop, Bad Cop highlights the stereotypes and cultural differences between Ontarians and Quebecers through this mismatched pair.

The cultural differences between Bouchard and Ward are pretty obvious. First off, though they are both bi-lingual (fluent in French and English), Bouchard mainly speaks French while Ward speaks mainly English. This is because Bouchard is from Quebec (where French is the official language) and Ward is from Ontario (where English is the de facto language). The difference in the two characters first language relates to the historic differences between the two providences and of the people who call them home. Since Ontario and Quebec once upon a time had different imperial powers, Ontario being settled by the English and Quebec being settled by the French, the culture of these providences is very different. At one point Bouchard tells Ward to “go to your Queen”. Bouchard is referring to the English Queen Elizabeth II who is the head of state of Canada through a Constitutional Monarchy. Bouchard is implying by using the word “your” that she has no significance to him and his fellow Quebeckers, while Ward and his fellow Ontarians depend on her and consider her one of their own.

The differences between the providences cultures obviously will lead to differences in the stereotypical residents of each of the providences. Bon Cop, Bad Cop shows...
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