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Penitentiary (1938)


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Credited cast:
Dist. Atty. Thomas Mathews
William Jordan
Elizabeth Mathews
Prison Yard Capt. Grady
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Minor Role (scenes deleted)
State's Attorney (scenes deleted)
Minor Role (scenes deleted)
Eric Wilton ...
Butler (scenes deleted)


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

prison | based on play | See All (2) »







Release Date:

5 February 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agapi piso ap' ta sidera  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In Feb. 1938, this film was being shown on a double bill with Wise Girl (1937). See more »


Remade as Convicted (1950) See more »

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User Reviews

decent remake of THE CRIMINAL CODE
28 March 2008 | by (Braintree, MA) – See all my reviews

Not as stylish or sharp as the Howard Hawks version, this very theatrical drama stars Walter Connolly as a D.A. who becomes a prison warden, and winds up overseeing the sentence of a man he prosecuted (a meek, repressed John Howard).

What it lacks in realism (it's amazing how many times the prisoners are allowed to use knives, for instance) it makes up for in tough dialogue; a sequence where Connolly tries as hard as he can to wear Howard down, using increasingly cruel language, is classic. Scarred-face Marc Lawrence isn't Boris Karloff, but he makes a strong heavy, nonetheless, and it's great to see Connolly in a serious role; he's perhaps best known as the long-suffering lawyer to John Barrymore's unstoppable ham actor in TWENTIETH CENTURY.

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