Alan Parker's powerfully brutal expose of a hellish Turkish prison which is based on the real-life experiences of a young America man named Billy Hayes, played brilliantly by the late Brad Davis, in an intensely compelling star-making performance. It follows his failed efforts to smuggle out some hashish to later sell in the United States, his being arrested at the Yesikoy Airport on a drug possession charge. His placement into Istanbul's inhuman Sagmalcilar prison after being sentenced to a four-and-a-half year term. An appeal financed by Billy's father, played superbly by the late character actor Mike Kellin, does not end well and results in a retrial, a new tougher judge throws out the possessions rap and convicts Billy on a smuggling charge, his sentence was then extended to life imprisonment, 30 years under the merciless Turkish law. Billy must now fight to survive and keep his sanity in this filthy hellhole, as well endure the physical and sexual abuses by a gigantic, sadistic prison guard named Hamidou, chillingly played by the late Paul L. Smith. Billy has a ever-present desire to get on the "Midnight Express," which is the prison slang for escape. Billy can no longer take it, so he and his friends decide to escape from this nightmarish prison before it is too late for all of them. There are superlative supporting performances by John Hurt, in an amazing Oscar nominated turn, as Max, a drug-addicted Englishman and Billy's best friend in the prison; Randy Quaid's splendid performance as the rebellions American prisoner Jimmy Booth; and Norbert Welsser's excellent performance as Erich, a gay Scandinavian prisoner who is attracted to Billy. Flawless direction by Alan Parker, with a forceful, intelligent Oscar winning screenplay by Oliver Stone, Giorgio Moroder's mesmerizing Oscar winning original score is unforgettable, and Michael Seresin's magnificent cinematography is remarkable. A totally enthralling motion picture that earned 6 Academy Award including Best Picture and Best Director: Alan Parker. Highly Recommended.