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Saint Jack

An American pimp spends his days hustling on the streets of 1970s Singapore, but dreams of more, in Peter Bogadanovich’s sultry screen adaptation of Paul Theroux’s novel.

Melodrama 1979 115 mins Not rated

Director: Peter Bogdanovich



American pimp Jack Flowers (Ben Gazzara) spends his days hustling and grafting in 1970s Singapore, but dreams of establishing his own – highly lucrative – brothel. With the support of his new friend, auditor William (Denholm Elliott, who received a BAFTA nomination for his role), he navigates shady business dealings, blackmail and traumatized US soldiers on leave from Vietnam.

Filmed entirely on location in Singapore - the first Hollywood movie to do so - Saint Jack was banned in the country upon its release ostensibly due to nude scenes and strong language although the real reason was more likely related to the film's depiction of Singapore (Bogdanovich had submitted a fake storyline and title in order to get shooting permits approved). The ban was finally lifted in 2006.