The Bad Lieutenant
The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call – New Orleans is an indie intelligent “cop movie” that is really much more. A little worried it was going to be a typical cop movie, I was a little hesitant to watch it, but I was glad I did. Digging deep into both addiction and morality, this thriller will keep you wanting more and it delivers.
As you would guess from the name of the film, it is about a bad lieutenant named Terence McDonagh (Nicolas Cage). Situations he gets into as a cop he uses to his advantage for drugs. When he busts a drug dealer, he will score some of the drugs from himself. He prefers to do a lot of his work off the record especially when it comes to collecting evidence.
He has a lover named Frankie (Eva Mendes) who is a prostitute and together they work as a team for money and drugs. But drugs aren’t the only thing Terence has gotten himself into, gambling is also a big part of his life. He begins to dig himself deeper and deeper with drug dealers and bookies that eventually make Frankie’s life in danger.
The Bad Lieutenant is riddled with twists and new sequence of events, the two hour run time seems to end in no time at all. It is gripping and keeps you wanting more and more until the very end. Without divulging too much of the film way, the film does come full circle at the end in way you almost can’t help but applaud to show your appreciation at the conclusion.
Nicolas Cage played the character superbly. You almost couldn’t imagine anyone else playing the part. You can see him physically and mentally deteriorating and heading into a downward spiral as his character was. He really played the character with full conviction. I have always respected the work Cage has done and this performance validates my respect. He rightfully won the Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor.
Many times throughout the film, whether it was a hallucination shot from the drugs or what would seem a normal shot seemed to be captured in an unorthodox way. It really portrays New Orleans beautifully. Untraditional angles and great use of the camera would earn a nomination for Best Cinematography at the 2010 Independent Spirit Awards.
The Bad Lieutenant is an indie film that I think everyone can enjoy. The plot seems to grow with every scene and there doesn’t seem to be a dull spot in it. The storyline is captivating and the cinematography is excellent. It’s truly a thriller that you must see.