2 items from 2015
Would you be a better guard or a better prisoner? How would you act? Most of us are inherently familiar with the "Stanford Prison Experiment", the infamously legendary psychology experiment conducted in the 1970s involving a mock prison testing the limits of prisoners against the guards. Many have been trying to adapt this for years, and we finally have a take on it - literally called The Stanford Prison Experiment. Director Kyle Patrick Alvarez (of C.O.G. from Sundance 2013) along with screenwriter Tim Talbott bring to life the intense, brutal mock prison setup in the basement of a Stanford building. It's riveting to watch, and will be divisive just based on how crazy it gets. But we all knew it would go this far, right? Right? The setup for the Stanford Prison Experiment is fairly basic - they recruit 18 different students for a study, each to be paid $15 per day for two weeks. »
- Alex Billington
An elaborate behavioral simulation spirals shockingly out of control — and to a lesser degree, so does the movie — in “The Stanford Prison Experiment,” a grimly staged dramatic reconstruction of Philip Zimbardo’s notorious 1971 scientific inquiry into the psychology of power and the human capacity for inflicting and accepting abuse. In an ambitious step up from his intimate character studies “Easier With Practice” and “C.O.G.,” director Kyle Patrick Alvarez commits to a fully immersive procedural approach that potently conveys the study’s lengthy duration and claustrophobic intensity, making for a viewing experience that is by turns gripping, tedious and deliberately discomfiting. But for all its bludgeoning effectiveness, the film also manages to be at once heavy-handed in some respects and annoyingly vague in others; although sure to have its defenders, it’s probably too strong a dose of foul medicine to catch on significantly with the public.
Perhaps performing their own sort of audience case study, »
- Justin Chang
2 items from 2015
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