NJAFBIT: Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans / My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done

Sadly, in film there all too often is such a thing as the oft-mentioned "law of diminishing returns." Many would say that Werner Herzog has fallen prey to it, and although I am not exactly among them, I admit to some casual misgivings of late. But- say what you will about Herzog's post-millennial films (his 1999 documentary on Klaus Kinski proved to be the last film he would make entirely in German, officially ringing in his "American" period,) the guy is keeping himself busy. And, to be fair, he hasn't laid any massive stinkbombs just yet, even if he hasn't really equaled much of his earlier work, to say nothing of his earliest (and acknowledged) masterpieces, which now seem light years away. So, we take a deep breath, muddle through the internet rumblings, and wait for the next one to come out, ever fearful of that one giant misstep that could land him in America's bad graces, where he seems to have ended up in Germany.

Well.. Here they are. Both of them. He's got two in the pipeline. Both have annoyingly long titles, and both would seem to be, at least in so far as what is perceptible in these trailers, 'crime' movies. Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you:

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans


My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done

Aaaaaand... I'm already lost.

I can hear the faint praise damning these two already. "Herzog riffs on the American cop movie." I can hear his voice in the interviews. "These were the films I was watching as a young man." BL:POCNO has got The Cage himself, Eva Mendes showing a little skin, and Val Kilmer. MSMSWHYD has got Willem Dafoe, Chloe Sevigny, and David Lynch himself on as producer (oh, and Udo Kier!) Both, wonderfully, have Brad Dourif, Irma P. Hall, guns, B+/A- list casts, a hint of marketability, and all sorts of baffling, tantalizing potential, so expect these two to be paired for a long time to come. Both will hopefully be out this year, but neither has an official release date announced (although both will be showing at the Toronto International Film Festival in just a few days, so keep your eyes peeled for the early reviews.)

Will Nick Cage bring the new Herzog to a big shiny multiplex near you? Let's hope not. But it might happen. Let's be real, though; Kinski (and, to a lesser extent, Bruno S.,) were Herzog's true muses in the fiction film. He seems to know this. Maybe he's shopping for a new one? If so, let's hope he chooses Shannon over Cage. Or that he has a clue what to do with either of them.

Either way, it's new Herzog. Two of them! You gotta get excited.

Not going there. Not this time.

see above

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