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Midnight Express (1978)

7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 47,570 users  
Reviews: 236 user | 63 critic

The true story of Billy Hayes, an American college student who is caught smuggling drugs out of Turkey and thrown into prison.

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Writers:

(book), (book), 1 more credit »
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Title: Midnight Express (1978)

Midnight Express (1978) on IMDb 7.7/10

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 16 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
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Tex
Paolo Bonacelli ...
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Hamidou (as Paul Smith)
...
...
...
Max
Mike Kellin ...
Franco Diogene ...
...
Gigi Ballista ...
...
Peter Jeffrey ...
Joe Zammit Cordina ...
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Storyline

On October 6, 1970 while boarding an international flight out of Istanbul Airport, American Billy Hayes is caught attempting to smuggle 2 kilos of hashish out of the country, the drugs strapped to his body. He is told that he will be released if he cooperates with the authorities in identifying the person who actually sold him the hash. Billy's troubles really begin when after that assistance, he makes a run for it and is recaptured. He is initially sentenced to just over four years for possession, with no time for the more harsh crime of smuggling. The prison environment is inhospitable in every sense, with a sadistic prison guard named Hamidou ruling the prison, he who relishes the mental and physical torture he inflicts on the prisoners for whatever reason. Told to trust no one, Billy does befriend a few of the other inmates, namely fellow American Jimmy Booth (in for stealing two candlesticks from a mosque), a Swede named Erich, and one of the senior prisoners having already ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A story of triumph. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

6 October 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Expreso de medianoche  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,300,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$35,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

American film debut of actress Irene Miracle. See more »

Goofs

The "fez" hat worn by several Turkish men in the movie has been extremely rare in Turkey since 1925 when it was abolished by Kemal Ataturk (the leader and founder of the Republic of Turkey) in an attempt to "westernize" the country. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Susan makes her way through a line at an airline checkpoint]
Susan: Excuse me... Excuse me... Excuse me... Excuse me.
[she reaches Billy in line]
Susan: Nervous?
Billy Hayes: No.
Susan: Geez, I hate flying.
Billy Hayes: It's something I ate. I think I've been poisoned.
Susan: Or you're just excited about getting home.
Billy Hayes: No, I think it's the baklavas.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Falcon and the Snowman (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Istanbul Blues
By David Castle
See more »

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User Reviews

 
chasing the sensation
27 December 2005 | by (Switzerland) – See all my reviews

I've seen the movie, after i heard so many times, what kind of thrill and dramatic story that is. Straight ahead, to be honest: This movie is waste of time and beside that, it twists the truth. People might say, that it is just entertainment, but this movie comes up with the ambition to show the world, how brutally corruption in mid-east countries exist.

The problem of the whole storytelling is the one-sided point of view. I'm telling this, because you can't approach seriousness and afterwards when the audience, i think especially the Turkish, is getting angry at your spoiling work, turn around and save your butt by telling, hey it's just entertainment. This is cheap recreancy.

The movie itself is driven by known feeling-games, portraying "bad-good" skirmish without any draft to endorse the story. After some certain point it's getting boring and annoying, since there is too little atmosphere in the movie, and that leaves a cheesy aftertaste.

It's a pity, why Olive Stone didn't go deeper into the characters, because then the audience have had some knots to cling to some interesting aspects. So in the end, Oliver Stone fails and produces a bunch of crap, sorted by a bad story.

rawkid i'm the audience, i decide.


30 of 57 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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