THE BAD LIEUTENANT PORT OF CALL: NEW ORLEANS (2010)
The Bad Lieutenant Port Of Call: New Orleans (2009)
The only criminal he can’t catch is himself
“It’s amazing how much you can get done when you have a purpose in life.”
Edward R. Pressman
New Orleans police officer Terence sustains a life long back injury while rescuing a prisoner about to drown in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He is promoted to Lieutenant for his bravery, but is left facing a life of chronic pain. When the prescribed painkillers begin to stop doing the job, Terence finds himself taking illegal drugs to combat the pain, beginning with cocaine, which he routinely shares with his prostitute girlfriend Frankie.
In order to have a permanent and free supply, he makes an arrangement with a collegue where he helps himself to the stash of compounded substances in the police property room, and also begins to abuse the power of his position by bullying suspects into handing over their stash, including holding up a young woman and her boyfriend, who he ends up smoking crack and having sex with in the street.
On a deepening downwards spiral, with gambling debts and using abusive methods with an old lady in a nursing home during an important murder enquiry involving drugs, almost costing him his job, Terence goes into a highly corrupt partnership with the big time drug dealer ‘Big Fate’ who is the suspect on the case, and now has permanent access to crack and heroin.
Terence is also in debt to another powerful gang leader who is demanding a huge amount of money from him in compensation for a customer of Frankie’s, whom Terence threatened earlier. He uses Frankie to lever Terence into getting the money in two days but when he doesn’t comply, a massive shoot out results during an unhinged crack taking session with Big Fate and his crew, with a hallucinogenic, hyper confident Terence somehow coming out on top. As Terence’s indulgences become more and more depraved, the movie becomes more and more surreal, with hallucinatory scenes including the appearance of Iguanas, reflecting Terence’s drug addled frame of mind.
Terence is estranged from his alcoholic father and step mother, but takes Frankie to stay with them to protect her from danger and while there, after spending time with Terence’s father who is attending back to back AA meetings for his own alcoholism, Frankie decides to get clean.
Will Terence ever want or be able to untangle himself from the web of corruption he has created, resolve the case and cover up all connection with Big Fate, remove himself from the seedy world of drugs and his addiction to them, and have a future with Frankie?
Nicolas cage won the 2009 Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor and was nominated for the 2010 Chlotrudis Award .For Best Actor or his performance.
This is Nicolas Cage’s second film with Eva Mendes, they appeared together in Ghost Rider (2007). The iguanas in Terence McDonagh’s drug fuelled hallucinations scenes belong to director Werner Herzog who insisted they appear in the film. Nicolas Cage’s performance was so convincing, that Werner Herzog asked him what he was snorting (it was saccharin).
(c) Cagealot Castle