Yeah I have showed this film to many people and they start out thinking "is this some coming of age kids BBC thing" the Morell comes in and they are like "this is kinda funny" and then the knife scene and well, all hell breaks loose. I'm yet to meet someone who didnt like it actually.
It used to be my favourite Meadows film, but like Daz said its best on first viewing. I think DMS stands up better to repeat viewings but thats probably just me.
Yeah, the thing about the knife scene for me is it completely changes the whole tone of the film to put the viewer on edge. And not only that, you can really relate to people like Morrell; how many of us know of those 'loose cannon' quirky type of people, who you quietly slag off yet you know he could just flip at any moment. A really unstable character played absolutely perfectly by Paddy.
I can't think of many other films where I was completely gripped and on edge as much as I was during the first time I'd ever seen it.