Mystery Train, like Down by Law, is a small group portrait of misfits and foreigners adrift in the American South. Here the setting has shifted to Memphis, the cast has widened, and the mood has slightly darkened. A young, rock-’n’-roll-obsessed Japanese couple (Masatoshi Nagase and Yûki Kudô) make a trans-Pacific pilgrimage to the home of (for her) Elvis and (for him) Carl Perkins. An Italian widow (Nicoletta Braschi), lost in the city, hears a disquieting story about the ghost of the King. And a down-and-out Brit (Joe Strummer), mourning the loss of his girlfriend and job, moves from boozing to violence to a kind of tragicomic redemption over the course of one long night. With its sensitivity to the plight of strangers in strange new American lands, its attention to the cultural memory of places, and its sense of the way taste can both bring people together and keep them apart, Mystery Train might be Jarmusch’s signature movie. With Steve Buscemi and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins.

Screening with:

Joe Strummer – When Pigs Fly Score
Jim Jarmusch | 30m

A documentary of Joe Strummer recording the score to Sara Driver’s film When Pigs Fly.