Set in New Orleans. Remy McSwain, lieutenant in Homicide finds that he has two problems, the first of a series of gang killings and Ann Osborne, a beautiful attorney from the D.A.'s police ... See full summary »

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4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Jack Kellom
...
Det. Andre DeSoto
...
McCabe
...
Ed Dodge
...
Bobby McSwain
Charles Ludlam ...
Lamar Parmentel
...
Mama
...
Vinnie 'The Cannon' DiMotti
...
Daddy Mention
...
Chef Paul
Jim Chimento ...
Freddie Angelo
...
Patrolman (as Edward St. Pe)
Robert Lesser ...
'Silky' Foster
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Storyline

Set in New Orleans. Remy McSwain, lieutenant in Homicide finds that he has two problems, the first of a series of gang killings and Ann Osborne, a beautiful attorney from the D.A.'s police corruption task force in his office. He begins a relationship with her as the killings continue only to have charges filed against him for accepting bribes as he stumbles on a police corruption Sting. While this is happening, the criminals insist that none of the crime gangs are behind the killings. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Between them lies the fate of the state of New Orleans See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

28 August 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nothing But The Truth  »

Box Office

Gross:

$17,685,307 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The production company was aided greatly in its ability to film in and around New Orleans by the state's Film Commission. Shortly after this film (which is about political corruption) premiered, several members of the Film Commission were indicted in a kickback scandal. See more »

Goofs

Both times - on different days - when Ann and Remy are talking on the phone, it is either sunset or sunrise outside her office, but it's cloudy, say mid-day, outside Remy's office See more »

Quotes

Lamar Parmentel: New Orleans is a marvelous environment for coincidence.
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Big Easy (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

PINE GROVE BLUES
Performed by Dewey Balfa
Composed by Nathan Abshire
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User Reviews

 
One of the first dirty cops films
1 April 2006 | by (Van Buren, Arkansas) – See all my reviews

There have always been dirty cops in movies, but they were the exception rather than the rule. Generally, police were portrayed in a favorable light as dedicated enforcers of the law. There have always been funny cops beginning with the famous Keystone Cops of the silent years. In the 1930's the police were often pictured as comical; in the 1940's and 1950's sometimes as brutes using force to elicit confessions from the accused. In a few films of the hippie era, cops were painted as pigs. Today dirty cops are standard movie fare, a sign of our cynical era. The talented actor, David Morse, has made a good living playing dirty cops. "The Big Easy" was one of the first, if not the first, to picture dirty cops as omnipresent. Even the one good cop has dirty hands.

The setting is New Orleans before the danger waters nearly destroyed the heart and soul of the Big Easy. This film, thanks to the input both on and off the screen by Dennis Quaid, captures the essence of the culture of the quaint jewel of the Mississippi, especially the Cajun ingredient. Quaid plays a New Orleans policeman, Det. Remy McSwain, who is in the midst of investigating the murder of a wise guy. Quaid, on the other hand, is himself a target of investigation by internal affairs headed by an outsider Anne Osborne (Ellen Barkin). The two develop a love-hate type relationship in and out of the boudoir. The script is well-written, filled with twists and maneuvers that lead viewers on a merry chase.

There is a load of humor providing a respite from all the murder, mayhem, and back-stabbing going on. One funny scene has Anne Osborne mistaking Remy McSwain's brother for Remy and going for his balls. Another scene has the marvelous John Goodman as Det. Andre DeSoto emptying his pockets of weapons. He plunks down guns of various shapes and sizes, a pair of brass knuckles, a knife or two, and a billy club. He remarks nonchalantly, "And if that don't work, I'll p*ss on 'em." A few of the jokes would be considered politically incorrect in today's Hollywood. After one particularly brutal set of killings involving an explosion and accompanying fire that leaves a mentally challenged man dead, Remy confides to his partner, McCabe (Lisa Jane Persky), "Now they're killing retards." She replies dryly, "Then why aren't you dead?"

The soundtrack for "The Big Easy" is precious. It contains some of the best Cajun music ever recorded. Professor Longhair, Aaron Neville, The Dixie Cups' "Iko Iko (Jock-A-Mo)," an updated version of the legendary Cajun fiddler Harry Choates' "Jole Blon," and one selection written by Dennis Quaid are just a few of the glorious selections included in the film and on the CD.

Add to this fine acting by a grand cast including a standout performance by Ned Beatty as Jack Kellom, a career officer getting ready for retirement and marriage to Remy's mother. Remy's father used to be Jack's partner. R & B artist Solomon Burke makes the most of his small part as wise guy Daddy Mention, who believes in putting the "Dad" in "Daddy." Note Jim Garrison, infamous New Orleans attorney who publicized one of the major conspiracy theories involving the Kennedy assassination, as the judge. He was later portrayed by Kevin Costner in "JFK." Watch also for veteran actor Marc Lawrence as mob boss Vinnie 'The Cannon' DiMotti in a small yet significant part near the beginning of the movie.


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