I guess in this first wave of reviews, I will be writing a lot of these sentences: This is one of the movies that really influenced me. I watched it when I was younger and I was fascinated with this character for quite some time. I guess you can call me naive, but I truly believed in that time that police detectives could not behave this way. After some thinking, I finally figured out what was that trait that captivated me after I met The Lieutenant. And that trait was power, absolute power. However, with absolute power comes absolute responsibility and if you cannot maintain that responsibility, you’re down to drugs and booze to get you through the day. The bravery and acting skill that Harvey Keitel showed here were something extraordinary. He was the The Lieutenant, showing us, honestly, what’s the daily life of this person. The movie does not judge this behavior, but more like a witness, it just watches what’s happening, unable not only to intervene but to think of a way how to help. And that’s life.

Bad Lieutenant [1992] Movie Review Recommendation PosterIt is early in the morning and our hero, Lieutenant is driving his kids to school. After dropping the off, it’s time for his morning fix as he does cocaine before arriving at scene of a murder. We follow him over the next few days as his life slowly but surely starts spinning out of control.

Director Abel Ferrara was first noticed back in 1981 with an interesting revenge flick Ms .45. Ten years later we can see that he only improved, especially with pacing. Some of the scenes are so masterfully cut that the emotional impact is sometimes really enormous. The iconic scene featured on the poster is one of them. This is a very engaging and interesting movie and although it seems like it’s about some deep philosophical messages, it’s actually a very good thriller. It’s deeply subversive, even with this, at a first glance, evil man. He has wife, two kids, a good paying job and in order to get all this, he undoubtedly had to go through the usual hoops. So, we can claim with certainty that this man was once a relatively normal and functioning member of the society. Then something happened, whether gradually or suddenly, it doesn’t matter. He’s able to do all these things and abuse his power without consequences, raising two very important questions: why and how. But let’s not get too bogged down in the psychological analysis of this phenomenal movie and conclude this review with a quote from Dostoevsky’s Notes from Underground. The first four sentences reminded me of this movie and I will leave you with them:

I am a sick man. … I am a spiteful man. I am an unattractive man. I believe my liver is diseased.

Director: Abel Ferrara

Cast: Harvey Keitel, Victor Argo, Stella Keitel, Frankie Thorn

Fun Stuff: This film was shot in 18 days. For its video release, the British Board of Film Classification insisted that 1 minute and 47 seconds of footage be excised. The cuts were largely made in the scene where Harvey Keitel takes drugs with Zoe Lund.


IMDb Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0103759/

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