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Bad Lieutenant (1992)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama  |  17 December 1992 (Argentina)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 26,393 users   Metascore: 67/100
Reviews: 169 user | 69 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

While investigating a young nun's rape, a corrupt New York City police detective, with a serious drug and gambling addiction, tries to change his ways and find forgiveness.

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(as Zoe Lund) ,
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Title: Bad Lieutenant (1992)

Bad Lieutenant (1992) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Beat Cop
...
Cop #1 (as Paul Calderone)
...
Cop #2 (as Leonard Thomas)
Robin Burrows ...
Ariane
...
The Nun
Victoria Bastel ...
Bowtay
...
Jesus
Brian McElroy ...
Frankie Acciarito ...
...
Lieutenant's Wife
...
Lieutenant's Daughter
Dana Dee ...
Lieutenant's Baby Girl
Anthony Ruggiero ...
Lite
...
J.C.
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Storyline

A police Lieutenant goes about his daily tasks of investigating homicides, but is more interested in pursuing his vices. He has accumulated a massive debt betting on baseball, and he keeps doubling to try to recover. His bookies are beginning to get agitated. The Lieutenant does copious amounts of drugs, cavorts with prostitutes, and uses his status to take advantage of teenage girls. While investigating a nun's rape, he begins to reflect on his lifestyle. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

lieutenant | drugs | nun | gambling | rape | See All (99) »

Taglines:

Gambler. Thief. Junkie. Killer. Cop.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug use, language, violence and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 December 1992 (Argentina)  »

Also Known As:

Teniente corrupto  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$2,000,022 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (R-rated)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first time Harvey Keitel read the script, he threw it after 15 pages, arguing it was 'a piece of junk'. When he started reading it again, he arrived to the whole nun part, and was so captivated by her story that he understood the movie would be a unique experience. See more »

Goofs

Towards the end of the scene where LT is shooting heroin with the redhead, you can see the shadow of a crew member slip into the shot in the lower-right part of the screen. See more »

Quotes

Zoe: Vampires are lucky, they can feed on others. We gotta eat away at ourselves. We gotta eat our legs to get the energy to walk. We gotta come, so we can go. We gotta suck ourselves off. We gotta eat away at ourselves til there's nothing left but appetite. We give, and give and give crazy. Cause a gift that makes sense ain't worth it. Jesus said seventy times seven. No one will ever understand why, why you did it. They'll just forget about you tomorrow, but you gotta do it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Empire of the Censors (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

LET'S GET HIGH
Written by Adams / Van Lierop / Praga Khan (as Somora)
(P) 1991 Be's Songs
Performed by Lords of Acid
Used by permission of Antler / Subway Records & Caroline Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Intense, subtle, and in some ways unique- Bad Lieutenant is the sleeper of 1992
23 November 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Abel Ferrara has on his hands a small masterwork of one man's existence in the doldrums, and he has such a way of dealing with "the streets" as a perpetually gritty, hellish world in a movie that I didn't disbelieve it for a second. In a sense he can be compared to the likes of Scorsese, however he certainly works in a different frame of honesty in mind in depicting his lead character and those he encounters. At the core of this extremely well made, unconventional film is the best performance Harvey Keitel delivered in the nineties, a bravado piece of work in which he bares all of the qualities that can make up the badness in the lieutenant. The Lieutenant spends little time with his kids, and when he does is hardly happy, and when he leaves them he goes into the underworld to do coke, crack and heroin, gulps down alcohol like Evian, and tries to cling onto whatever dignity he has left in betting on the Mets in the championship series.

When a startling case occurs - a nun is raped by two street kids - the lieutenant is on the scene, however fogged in his muck, and can't understand how somebody, even a nun, can forgive such a crime. This leads into the third act of the film, and this is where the work propels itself into a higher ground, mature, spiritual, and ultimately fascinating in every aspect. Overall, Bad Lieutenant is a lean, un-abashed first-person singular in a rather sophisticated delivery. We are delivered a character, like Alex in Clockwork Orange for example, who is not even a half-way decent person. But just by the way Ferrara and Keitel bring us into his world, and the details of his existence, a viewer can start to understand that the film works on other levels besides those of a conventional "all around bad-cop" story.


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