104 minutes, U.K., 1986, Colour, 35mm

This underworld thriller, co-written with David Leland, brings a new level of emotional intensity to Jordan’s work and introduces a central theme – that love is never ours to control. In the employ of seedy kingpin Michael Caine, Bob Hoskins is heart-rending as the humble driver who falls hopelessly for elegant black prostitute Cathy Tyson without realising she’s in the throes of her own romantic obsession.

Characteristically for Jordan, it’s a classic song which defines the idealistic longing ensnaring the characters, the lustrous croon of Nat King Cole’s title tune contrasting brilliantly with the sleazy realities of ‘80s London’s meanest streets.

Showing as part of our Neil Jordan Retrospective which runs throughout May. His new film, Byzantium, opens on May 31st.

See our online exhibition of some of Neil Jordan’s substantial document collections held by the IFI Irish Film Archive.

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