Critic Reviews

69

Metascore

Based on 32 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
No one is better at this kind of performance than Nicolas Cage. He's a fearless actor. He doesn't care if you think he goes over the top. If a film calls for it, he will crawl to the top hand over hand with bleeding fingernails.
91
Bad Lieutenant doesn't go where you expect, but it has a stubborn, trippy logic.
88
A true feat of daring and one of the craziest films of the year.
88
Frankly, the story isn't remotely as interesting as Cage. Nothing is. In Ferrara's movie, Keitel emptied himself out. But there's a hellion's joy in Cage's cop.
80
Wall Street Journal
The sparkle is what's been missing in the star's (Cage) recent performances. What's not to love in a movie that transmutes Terence's moral squalor, and the squalid state of post-Katrina New Orleans, into darkly comic gold?
75
It's that constant weirdness, coupled with Nicolas Cage's best performance in pretty much forever, that makes this depraved, sexually charged, over-the-top drama so much fun to watch.
75
It's a maniacal performance, complete with mad gales of laughter and insane bouts of temper. Cage doesn't go over the top, but he teeters darn close.
75
A one-of-a-kind experience that boasts a twice-in-a-lifetime performance from Nicolas Cage. The actor has not gone this deep into the abyss since "Vampire's Kiss" (1989).
70
The Hollywood Reporter
There is a lot of very black humor; and it develops, somewhat surprisingly, into something suggesting a kind of cheerful pessimism.
63
Any resemblance between this Bad Lieutenant and the 1992 Abel Ferrara landmark is purely in the head of the dude who thought up the title.
20
The film is an exasperating bore.

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