Directed by Alan Parker, “Midnight Express” is the true story of Billy Hayes (Brad Davis) a smartass American who got what he deserved – up to a point – in a squalid Turkish prison. Caught red-handed smuggling hash-hish at the airport, he experiences a quick taste of Turkish bureaucracy as everyone wants credit for his capture. His first night, he is brutally beaten by a guard who could possibly have worked for Sadaam Hussein.
When Billy's first trial nets him four years for possession, he somehow adapts with the help of two Westerners and mindful of the Turkish aphorism, “may the time pass quickly.” But a subsequent trial for trafficking earns him thirty years, “to make an example of him.” As he calls the Turkish officials, “pigs,” he realizes that the only person who can help him now is himself, despite visits from his family, a very expensive lawyer, and his girlfriend who implicitly masturbates him through a visitor's window. As Billy sinks deeper into insanity in “Section 13,” there are homosexual advances, both welcomed and unwelcome, and extreme violence when he mutilates an adversary.
Allegedly, the real “Midnight Express” was an network of escape routes, not unlike the American Underground Railroad. In the film, Billy's escape was a little more direct and eventually led the way for the trading of American and Turkish prisoners. Oliver Stones won “Best Screenplay” in 1978.
The review of this Movie prepared by Angry Jim Magin