100

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
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.
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91

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
Bad Lieutenant doesn't go where you expect, but it has a stubborn, trippy logic.
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88

Boston Globe

By Wesley Morris
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.
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80

Wall Street Journal

By Joe Morgenstern
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?
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75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Peter Hartlaub
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.
Full Review
75

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Carrie Rickey
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).
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75

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
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.
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70

The Hollywood Reporter

By Ray Bennett
There is a lot of very black humor; and it develops, somewhat surprisingly, into something suggesting a kind of cheerful pessimism.
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63

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
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.
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20

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
The film is an exasperating bore.
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69 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.