THE BAD LIEUTENANT: PORT OF CALL – NEW ORLEANS
2009, Millennium Entertainment, 122 min, USA, Dir: Werner Herzog

No choir boy to begin with, cop Terence McDonagh (Nicolas Cage) becomes addicted to painkillers after an on-duty injury and quickly descends into a mania of drug abuse and corruption in post-Katrina New Orleans. Not since Klaus Kinski has Herzog worked with an actor of such intensity, and costars Eva Mendes, Val Kilmer and Xzibit rise to the level of Cage’s mesmerizing performance. Ignore the “bad” title here (there’s little connection to the 1992 Abel Ferrara film) - PORT OF CALL is a wildly entertaining thrill ride, flecked with dark humor and bizarre flourishes.


THE ROCK
1996, Buena Vista, 136 min, USA, Dir: Michael Bay

FBI chemical weapons specialist Nicolas Cage and ex-convict Sean Connery (the only man to successfully escape from Alcatraz, aka "The Rock"), are enlisted to break into the former prison when a disgruntled U.S. general (Ed Harris) goes over the edge, seizing the island with his elite commandos and threatening to attack San Francisco if his demands aren’t met. Bruckheimer’s first film after splitting with partner Don Simpson, THE ROCK is a mega-octane action machine, delivered with characteristic skill and humor by director Michael Bay and acted by a superb cast including Cage, Connery, David Morse, Michael Biehn and William Forsythe.


RUMBLE FISH
1983, Universal, 94 min, USA, Dir: Francis Ford Coppola

Director Francis Ford Coppola again adapts an S.E. Hinton novel, reuniting with Matt Dillon. Shot in black-and-white with stylized use of color and professed to be among Coppola’s personal favorites, it’s grittier and more phantasmagorical than THE OUTSIDERS. Here, Dillon plays Rusty James, a young gangbanger who looks fondly back on the days of yesteryear when his loner brother, Motorcycle Boy (Mickey Rourke), held court as the king of the street toughs. With a young Diane Lane as Rusty’s sweetheart. Look out for Dennis Hopper as the boys’ ne’er-do-well father and William Smith as one of the meanest small-town cops in movie history. Costarring Chris Penn, Nicolas Cage and Tom Waits.


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