Down by Law

A minimalist film about the arrest, imprisonment and escape of three very different men.

Down by Law
Germany, United States 1986
  • Czech
107 min.

An unemployed disc-jockey, a small-time pimp and a strong-willed Italian tourist meet in the confined space of a prison cell. Avoiding a specific time period, the story is set, abstractly, in New Orleans and the dense, surrounding swamps of Louisiana. Jarmusch calls the style of the film „neo-beat-noir-comedy“, with a story line that openly accepts conventions, and an atmosphere that is part nightmare and part fairy-tale.

Director: Jim Jarmusch
Screenplay: Jim Jarmusch
Cinematography: Robby Müller
Music: John Lurie, Tom Waits
Sound: Drew Kunin
Editing: Melody London
Production Design: Janet Densmore
Producer: Alan Kleinberg
Co-production: Tom Rothman, Jim Stark
Costumes: Carol Wood
Cast: Tom Waits, John Lurie, Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi, Ellen Barkin, Billie Neal, Rockets Redglare, Vernel Bagneris, Timothea, L.C. Drane