Midnight Express

Midnight Express

3.5 12
Director: Alan Parker

Cast: Alan Parker, Brad Davis, Randy Quaid, John Hurt

     
 

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Midnight Express is a harrowing tale of a naïve American caught in a nightmare of his own making thousands of miles from his home. Billy Hayes (Brad Davis) is an American tourist visiting Turkey with his girlfriend Susan (Irene Miracle) when he's caught by customs officials trying to smuggle a large amount of hashish out of the country. The crime would normally

Overview

Midnight Express is a harrowing tale of a naïve American caught in a nightmare of his own making thousands of miles from his home. Billy Hayes (Brad Davis) is an American tourist visiting Turkey with his girlfriend Susan (Irene Miracle) when he's caught by customs officials trying to smuggle a large amount of hashish out of the country. The crime would normally carry a sentence of four years, but officials decide to make an example of Billy, and he draws a 30-year sentence despite the promises of his Turkish legal counsel. While Susan and Billy's father (Mike Kellin) pledge to do everything they can to speed Billy's release, in fact there's little than can be done. Billy quickly finds himself in a hellish prison that's a nightmare of filth, violence, rape, inedible food, and unspeakable health conditions. However, Billy gains a few confidantes behind bars: Jimmy (Randy Quaid), an American in a constant state of emotional overdrive; Max (John Hurt), an intelligent, drug-addicted Englishman; and Erich (Norbert Weisser), a gay Scandinavian who is attracted to Billy but accepts his gentle refusals of sex. Before long, Billy is convinced that he can take no more, and he makes plans to take the "midnight express" -- jailhouse slang for escape. While his friends are willing to help, they also make clear that almost no one who has tried to escape has lived to tell the tale. Based on a true story, Midnight Express was a box-office hit which won wide acclaim for the performances of Brad Davis and John Hurt; and the screenplay, by Oliver Stone, won an Academy Award.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Laura Abraham
Throughout this nightmarish tale of injustice, director Alan Parker never allows the audience's sense of fear and dread to wane. It is impossible to shake the feeling of insanity brought upon by the corrupt Turkish prison system, so vividly portrayed here. The murky, hazy camerawork further enhances the alienation. Though often unbearably frustrating and graphically violent, Midnight Express is an exceptional accomplishment from Parker and screenwriter Oliver Stone; one need only look at pale imitations such as Brokedown Palace and Return to Paradise to gauge its quality.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/21/2009
UPC:
0043396229488
Original Release:
1978
Rating:
R
Source:
Sony Pictures
Time:
2:01:00

Special Features

Commentary with Director Alan Parker; The Making of Midnight Express; "The Producers, " "The Production" and "The Finished Film" Featurettes; Photo Gallery

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Brad Davis Billy Hayes
Randy Quaid Jimmy Booth
John Hurt Max
Bo Hopkins Tex
Irene Miracle Susan
Paul Smith Hamidou
Mike Kellin Mr. Hayes
Dimos Starenios Ticket Seller
Paolo Bonacelli Rifki
Norbert Weisser Erich
Franco Diogene Yesil
Michael Ensign Stanley Daniels
Gigi Ballista Chief Judge
Kevork Malikyan Prosecutor
Peter Jeffrey Ahmet
Michael Yannatos Translator

Technical Credits
Alan Parker Director
Milena Canonero Costumes/Costume Designer
Ray Corbett Asst. Director
Peter Guber Executive Producer
Gerry Hambling Editor
Evan Hercules Art Director
Mary Hillman Makeup
Geoffrey Kirkland Production Designer
Alan Marshall Producer
Giorgio Moroder Score Composer
Oliver Stone Screenwriter
David Puttnam Producer
Roy Scammell Stunts
Michael Seresin Cinematographer
Clive Winter Sound/Sound Designer

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Midnight Express 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a very atmospheric, emotional, well acted motion picture. The cinematography is superb, the acting is very believable. It points out a lot of unjust things that happen in the world whether justified or not. It has nothing to do with ''Turkish People'' as the previous reviewer would have you think. This could have taken place in any other foreign country or even America for that matter. Just see it for the emotion, entertainment value and leave all else behind. Excellent movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie has great dramatic acting (yes, randy quaid!), excellent character development, and paints an incredibly bleak exsistance of life in a foreign prison. In has the ability to keep you on the edge of your seat. And to counter the poor rating given by our turkish rater (same person twice no doubt), this is turkey of 30 years ago, when relations between the us and turkey were poor. Remember, there are good Mississipians, but that doesn't mean that Mississippi Burning is automatically a bad movie. If you enjoy drama, this is definitely worth the time. There is a reason it won an Oscar.
Guest More than 1 year ago
no doubt about it, ths movie was a shocker. the perfomances were above average, the story was based on real events, and oliver stone's screenplay won a well-deserved academy award. don't miss this movie!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Few movies have mesmerized me in my lifetime (Braveheart, Deer Hunter, The American Dream); but, none left me numb as Midnight Express did. Brad Davis is superb. He depicts a person with deep convictions by not yielding to the 'partner-wanna-be', but still realizes his wrong-doing with the hashish. I would recommend this movie to anyone unless you're looking for laughter. A very deserving Oscar depiction of Turkey-American relations 25-30 years ago.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this movie was really cool and good. some parts i was like whoa. it was just heavy to watch,especially for a 13 year old. and i can`t believe that it`s a tru story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
in this movie all Turkish caracters are not Turkish.they dont speak turkish like turkish people andthey are lying about them.i have many turkish friend and i went to Turkey many times.Turkey isn't like that.its a beautiful country.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Alan Parker`s movie is a propaganda movie against Turkey and Turks. After his tragic movie; many people behavior have changed for Turks and Turkey even tough they have never visited to Turkey or never have a Turk friend. I urge you to go Turkey or have Turk friends and than watch this tragic movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Good acting due to poor scenario(why true events are always boring on screen inc. pappilion ?) and bad turkish language .In my opinion the movie deserves the awards. and I MUST SAY i live in turkey and love my country and belive that History is history no way to change it. Everyone one knows what the STATE made to the new PrimeMaster (i dont like him either).
Guest More than 1 year ago
Taking a different route from other reviewers, I'd like to point out the moot point made about homosexuality in the movie. It's obvious that males are shown feminine and about to kiss each other in almost every scene. Walking around in their underwear probably is no help avoiding sexual confrontation. If you are a lover of flower children of 70's with homosexual tendencies and have a grudge against the "state" I would recommend this movie.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago