After Katrina, police sergeant Terence McDonagh rescues a prisoner, hurts his back in the process and earns a promotion to lieutenant plus an addiction to cocaine and painkillers. Six months later, a family is murdered over drugs; Terence runs the investigation. His drug-using prostitute girlfriend, his alcoholic father's dog, run-ins with two old women and a well-connected john, gambling losses, a nervous young witness, and thefts of police property put Terence's job and then his life in danger. He starts seeing things. He wants a big score to get out from under mounting debts, so he joins forces with drug dealers. The murders remain unsolved. A bad lieutenant gets worse.Written by
The "dancing soul scene" is an obvious homage to Herzog's early classic Stroszek (1977) which features an iconic scene of a dancing chicken set to the exact same Sonny Terry song "Old Lost John." See more »
When McDonagh arrives at the RTA involving the alligator there is a red pick-up truck in between the two lanes of freeway traffic. Then, when he asks Lt. Stoyer to do him a favour, the truck is not there. See more »
Director Werner Herzog welcomes you to La-La Land once again in his latest film, starring Nicolas Cage as the world's worst cop.
Whether you love or loathe this film, I bet I can guarantee that you won't think it's ordinary. This is Herzog, after all. As for me, I thought it was decent, but give me Herzog's "Grizzly Man" or "Aguirre: The Wrath of God" any day.
What those two films have in common is a central figure -- one an actor, one not -- who are far more interesting and watchable than Nicolas Cage. Cage, playing a cop hooked on dope whose entire life is governed by trying to figure out where and how he can get his next fix, plays crazy like no one's business, and crazy certainly fits the film's tone, but I still think Herzog would have been wise to reel him in a little. Cage is so mannered that his acting becomes distracting. He pulls you out of the film instead of into it. Mid-way through, he inexplicably begins speaking in a voice reminiscent of a deranged Jimmy Stewart, and it's all I could focus on.
The film is staged as one long nightmare; there's a certain morbid fascination at seeing this sleazy guy's life unravel before our very eyes. Then, in the film's final moments, Herzog plays a joke on us that could have gone badly awry but instead works very well, and mimics the feelings one has upon waking from a bad dream. It's all clever and certainly watchable, but I couldn't help but wonder as I left my seat -- what's the point?
Another unusual film from an endlessly unusual filmmaker.
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