I watched this film by complete accident and have never discounted the influence it has served in my life.
Once the film had been seen I went onto read the book (much more intense) and then the sequel (the pain of confidement). Eventually having lost the movie some years ago I managed to win a copy on Ebay some weeks ago, once again opening me up to the harshness and bleakness this film gave me and still does.
A wonderful performance by David Hayman (totally hard, totally cold) and others (watch out for Rab C Nesbitt and Fulton Mackay from Porridge).
The film portays the true story of Jimmy Boyle as rather biased towards Boyle forgetting the effect he would have on some peoples life. Do not forget that these prison officers took some almighty provocation from Mr. Boyle and when Mr. Boyle in the movie questions the officers about wether they are any different from him they're answer is "we have families at home waiting for us...."
Having watched the majority of British Prison movies (Macvicar, Scum) once is left with the feeling that this is the top one. So sad that is has not enjoyed it's day on DVD yet.
I visited Peterhead Prison some years ago and was astonished with it's look, goodness knows only what it was like inside.
The brutal nature of the film is also astounding, knife slashing, prison beatings and a quite astonishing deterrent by Boyle to avoiding such beatings (Urgh!).
Do such beatings deter, well now adays people believe such punishment has no effect and is unfair on the criminal, funny that as Boyle is now a reformed character preaching to the addicted masses, one could be contraversial and say that his punishment served as his "sense of freedom"
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