Review 'GEO': the purest, hardest and most humane portrait that will take your breath away

Amazon Prime Video premieres this Friday, October 15 ‘GEO Beyond the limit’, the first audiovisual production to enter the hermetic world of the Special Operations Group of the Spanish National Police. Through its eight episodes, the 7 and a half months (finally a year due to the pandemic) that the course lasts to become part of this elite division are followed.

Confi TV, the television section of El Confidencial, has already been able to see the entire documentary series and, after attending the press conference that took place last Thursday, October 7 at the GEO base in Guadalajara, visit some facilities and observe the exhibits that they prepared for the presentation, offers now, no spoilers, criticism.

Reality above all

‘GEO Beyond the Limit’ is one of those spaces designed for television in which a priori it is difficult to believe that it is going to show the reality it sells, but in this case it fulfills what was promised. Just by playing the first minutes of the first chapter you realize that you are in front of a product that his maxim is to show the pure truth, something that is appreciated among so much plot prepared in the current small screen. Overcoming, effort, learning and discipline, are the values ​​that predominate naturally.

The strength of the course itself, the work done by the instructors and the suffering with enthusiasm and enthusiasm that the students put in, is so powerful that just by showing what is happening you already have the story created. I had the opportunity to chat briefly with Inspector Pelayo, the head of the course, and he assured me that his work without a camera in front of him would have been exactly the same. After viewing the entire series I have no doubt that this is the case.

From one hundred to twelve, in the style of ‘The Squid Game’

The XXX course of ‘GEO’ starts with 100 national policemen (after a previous selection in which almost 300 were presented) willing to give themselves body and soul, but as they have already reported, only 12 become operatives. Sometimes it is inevitable that the docuseries remind you of a ‘talent show’, movies like ‘The Hunger Games’ or series as fashionable as ‘The Squid Game’, in which the less talented or strong drop out or are eliminated. Fortunately, these facts are not emphasized too much, moving away the focus of the show that this could offer on television.

‘GEO Beyond the Limit’: Two Senior Leaders Dismantle Amazon’s Documentary Series

Berto Molina

The human factor

And although we are witnessing the exception of the first phase of preparation to be part of this special body of state security, we are really in front of people with their fears, dreams, insecurities … As demonstrated throughout the entire documentary series, the bonds that are created between the applicants are authentic, crossing the screen when they support each other.

It is impossible not to get excited with the gestures of recognition of the instructors to the students, the moments of improvement or frustration and the goodbyes. The human part has an important and necessary weight, which achieves one of the objectives of ‘GEO Beyond the Limit’, which is none other than to bring citizens closer to the dedication of these national security professionals.

Water, the most distressing element

Without a doubt, the element that generates the most anguish when seeing the tests they have to face is water. As instructors repeatedly say, “water brings out demons, it always wins, it has no mercy and smells of fear”, something that can be observed both in a river, in the sea or in a pool. In these three scenarios, the then members of the National Police make us participate in some of their moments in which they practically reach the limit.

The aspiring ‘GEO’ in the Tagus. (Amazon Prime Video)

The relentless Inspector Pelayo

The Inspector PelayoAs we have already said before, he is the director of the course and one of the most responsible for the training of those who will be his colleagues in the near future. His role is key in the development of the Amazon Prime Video producer, being the great protagonist. He is serious, direct and implacable, but he shows that he is the best in his field and thanks to his way of being, speaking and transmitting, he also makes you surrender and trust him, as the applicants do, without any type of complaint or objection.

The other people in charge of the course, their colleagues, leaders in various disciplines, add to their work and offer different visions of the evolution of the future ‘GEO’, but it would be very difficult to imagine another person developing their work. Inspector Pelayo dominates the camera, the times and the word, as if he had been making television all his life. His gift for communicating and transmitting is almost equal to the passion he gives off as a professional.

Inspector Pelayo, head of the ‘GEO’ course. (Amazon Prime Video)

Unequal prominence

If there is something negative to highlight about the documentary, it is the unequal role that the students have. Perhaps by not opening too many plots or focusing on a few (the most powerful visually speaking), so as not to lose the main objective of showing the hardness of the course in general, we hardly discover things about the applicants. It only delves into a few, discovering in the end that most of the promotion are unknown and you know absolutely nothing about them. On the other hand, it is fair to praise and thank the dedication and sincerity of those who stand up throughout the series, such as Julián, Tizón or Alcántara.

Cinematic quality

The shots, the music, the transitions, the silences, the resources, the way in which the testimonies are introduced … do that throughout the documentary series we come to think that we are seeing a cinematographic blockbuster. ‘GEO Beyond the limit’ takes care of every detail and generates a masterful atmosphere that is not easy to achieve when dealing with this subject with the harshness that it implies.

‘GEO’ frame. (Amazon Prime Video)

Unbeatable result

Buendía Estudios and Amazon Prime Video get a outstanding in his new own Spanish production that can be seen in 240 countries and territories around the globe. Once you decide to embark on this unknown and inaccessible world, you just want to see more, know how they are improving and showing that on their own merits they deserve the long-awaited GEO beret Promote values ​​as important as sacrifice, dedication or companionship, so little exploited in real entertainment, it can only be valued positively.

Still from ‘GEO Beyond the Limit’. (Amazon Prime Video)
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