Friday, May 15, 2009

Bad Lieutenant (1992)

Bad Lieutenant is a crime-drama film directed by Abel Ferrara and starring Harvey Keitel as the eponymous "bad lieutenant". The screenplay was co-written by actress-model Zoë Tamerlis Lund (credited as Zoë Lund). She also played a small role in the film. Lund had been discovered by Ferrara and had starred in his earlier film, Ms. 45.

Keitel's nameless character is a corrupt police lieutenant who, throughout the movie, is spiralling rapidly into various drug addictions, including cocaine and heroin. The "Bad Lieutenant" is also a gambler who finds himself plunged into debt when the New York Mets win the National League Championship Series after trailing the Los Angeles Dodgers and former Met Darryl Strawberry 3-0. The Mets' comeback is a sort of "minor miracle" that defies the Lieutenant's lack of faith and parallels his eventual redemption. The Lieutenant is also regularly linked with the prodigal Strawberry. The turning point in the film arrives when the Lieutenant investigates the rape of a nun and uses this as a chance to confront his inner demons and perhaps achieve redemption.

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