Showing he doesn’t just use his Twitter to give us cinephiles the kind of Film School education we always dream of, Guillermo del Toro just got Mexican government officials to respond to an abuse of power that took place in Jalisco. Tweeting directly at Enrique Alfaro, the current governor of Jalisco, the Pan’s Labyrinth filmmaker amplified Revolución 3.0‘s reporting on an arrest of a man in Tala who was cuffed and manhandled for not following requisite quarantine COVID-19 guidelines. In the clip, shot by a passerby who recognized the uncalled for force being used, you can see two police officers ready to take a man who claims he was just on his way to get some food for his family.
“This is a citizen in the middle of a pandemic, not a criminal,” tweeted del Toro upon re-sharing the video. Indeed, to see the interaction between the two police officers and the unarmed and nonviolent man is uncomfortable. It captures how easily enforcement of quarantine and shelter in place restrictions like those in effect in Jalisco can criminalize citizens who are just trying to get by. “Perhaps I don’t understand things right now, but this is a moment that requires humanity and better judgment and not this,” del Toro also tweeted, before adding that the clip exemplified the definition of brutality.
Shortly thereafter, and given the traction the Oscar winner’s comments got on social media, Alfaro Ramírez and Tal mayor Enrique Buenrostro responded. Both stressed that the behavior of the two police officers — who could be seen manhandling the citizen while occasionally taking off their own face coverings even as they blasted the man’s own lack of a mask — was being investigated.