There's some corny dialogue, and the ending is unrealistically neat, but Tyson and Hoskins are excellent as an intelligent but trapped prostitute and her naive chauffer, set in a seedy London. This is 80s UK noir, where Thatcherite values (in the form of Caine's high end crook) clash with night scenes of street walkers and strip clubs. A stint in Hollywood was beckoning for Hoskins, but this is one his best films.
Superbly modulated and exquisitely atmoshperic thriller set in the sleazy clubs of Soho. The remarkable performances (Tyson and Hoskins followed by a reptilian pimp played by Cane) -only one among the many strengths of this perceptive film on identity (with strong class/sexuality/gender/race connotations)- yield a short diatribe on mutual recognition with full knowledge of the social barriers that need to be curbed.
A mordant fairy tale (aided by the Nat King Cole leitmotifs) with the grimness of the dark and dirty subject matter lifted by earthy authenticity and comedic elan. The naive heavy role fits Hoskins like a glove and I’ve not seen Tyson in a better role since. There’s nary a wasted shot and Jordan directs with brisk force. Sometimes not noticing mise-en-scene is as much the mark of excellence as showy set pieces.
That exceedingly rare bird - the lesser spotted criminal fairy tale, crossed with the Orphic noir. Brutal, funny, romantic, and touching in equal measures, with Hoskins giving the performance of his career, and Jordan creating a world that is simultaneously magical and disgusting.
A book by John Franklin Bardin, the neglected American mystery novelist made quasi-English by his "discovery" there in the 1970s, is on display and under discussion throughout Neil Jordan's second and second-best film (The Company of Wolves' priority is unbudgeable). Bardin's stories, suffused with the loneliness of feeling and being (e)strange(ed), beguile us, a la Mona Lisa, unto half-smiles with their own.
Very good movie where Hoskins, Bates and Caine really shines in their respective roles. I know that stories like this (gangster redemption et al.) might be dime a dozen but Jordan is a good enough director to make this movie soar. The photo and music also works well. In my mind one of the best brit gangster movies since it focuses on the human issues instead of violence, heists or turfwars. Recommended.
Pretty terrific movie. I gotta admit I'm not too crazy about Neil Jordan's work overall, but this is pretty much his strongest effort. The plot is a bit predictable but Bob Hoskins gives a spectacular performance. He can pull off the tough guy persona like no other. He's never over-acting and his characters feel very human, very real. Too bad his talent was completely underused after that.