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Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (2009)

The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans (original title)
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Terence McDonagh is a drug- and gambling-addled detective in post-Katrina New Orleans investigating the killing of five Senegalese immigrants.


Werner Herzog


William M. Finkelstein (screenplay) (as William Finkelstein)
3 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Nicolas Cage ... Terence McDonagh
Eva Mendes ... Frankie Donnenfield
Val Kilmer ... Stevie Pruit
Xzibit ... Big Fate (as Alvin 'Xzibit' Joiner)
Fairuza Balk ... Heidi
Shawn Hatosy ... Armand Benoit
Jennifer Coolidge ... Genevieve
Tom Bower ... Pat McDonagh
Vondie Curtis-Hall ... Captain James Brasser (as Vondie Curtis Hall)
Brad Dourif ... Ned Schoenholtz
Denzel Whitaker ... Daryl
Irma P. Hall ... Binnie Rogers
Shea Whigham ... Justin
Michael Shannon ... Mundt
Joe Nemmers ... Larry Moy


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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The only criminal he can't catch is himself.


Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug use and language throughout, some violence and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

11 December 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans See more »

Filming Locations:

USA See more »


Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$245,398, 22 November 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,697,956, 28 February 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Veteran television writer William M. Finkelstein's first feature film screenwriting credit. See more »


When arriving at the RTA with the alligator a string/wire can be seen moving the animals leg. See more »


Terence McDonagh: [to a man stuck in a cell as the water rises above his neck] You want me to get wet? On account of you?
See more »


Referenced in The Canyons (2013) See more »


Written by Eddie Miller, James Pebworth, Robert Yount
Performed by Johnny Adams
Published by Roschelle Music Publishing/Sony ATV Acuff Rose Music Publishing (BMI)
Licensed from Licensemusic.com ApS
Courtesy of Sun Entertainment Corporation
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User Reviews

The Gator Cam
17 March 2010 | by FrostyChudSee all my reviews

Man...what a crappy movie. I found myself looking away from the screen sometimes out of embarrassment for Nicolas Cage. Everything was bad. The only reason I didn't walk out of the theater is because I am from New Orleans and wanted to see how Herzog filmed the city. In fact I thought his choice of locations was excellent. The African funeral scene was filmed in Holt Cemetery, which is a potter's field in an otherwise middle-class neighborhood. If you go there you will find human bones sticking out of the ground everywhere! No one has a New Orleans accent except the old black lady. I don't have one either but I am from the suburbs. The fancy apartment building where the old lady lives is the St. Vincent de Paul Guest House on Magazine Street. Stay there! It is atmospheric and inexpensive. I also used to live one block from where they busted "Midget". The person whose room I rented left the house after being bashed in the head with a brick while unlocking her door.

Other than Holt Cemetery and some nice shots of some of the most picturesque slums in America, there is little to recommend. Fairuza Balk looks really good in her underwear scene...Nicolas Cage mentions it too. He is a terrible actor. He is totally unconvincing. The whole movie is boring and pointless. Is it a comedy or a drama? It is neither, it is nothing. It could maybe have been a success if Cage and Herzog had played it differently. Instead of making the Bad Lieutenant tortured, they should have made him a sort of jolly, amoral sadist who just enjoys the hell out of himself. Cage tried to put on his pathos-face though and screwed it up.

Some random remarks:

  • The plantation house looks cool. - Xzibit looks exactly like 50 Cent. - There are no Senegalese immigrants in New Orleans - The iguana stuff is stupid. - The whole movie is stupid.

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