It’s important to note that this is not a remake of The Bad Lieutenant from the early 90s staring Harvey Keitel. It’s a completely new story where, really the only similarity is both main characters are drug addicts. So, if anyone was worried about Harvey’s legacy somehow being tainted, don’t. In fact, director Werner Herzog didn’t even want to call this picture “Bad Lieutenant”, but instead wanted to start a franchise called “Port of Call New Orleans”. Apparently, one of the producers wasn’t happy with it, and the compromise is what we see here.
So, on with the film. It’s incredibly bizarre. A decent story, but all together, just weird. Nicolas Cage’s character, Terence McDonough does coke, pretty much, the entire movie. He’s either doing blow, rubbing his nose, trying to score blow, or talking about how he needs more blow. All of this while he’s supposed to be finding out who killed a family of about seven people. His behavior becomes more and more erratic and he starts hallucinating, some of which we witness too.
About half-way through the film he becomes so coked-out his face seems to go numb, and he sounds more like Jimmy Stewart than Nicolas Cage. However, this isn’t annoying. It’s actually quite humorous and a good touch to the man we see deteriorating before our eyes. One thing that does get annoying very quickly is Cage’s wheezing laugh he seems to throw down about every thirty seconds at one point. Watching this movie is not time wasted. But, I wouldn’t recommend canceling any appointments in order to see it.