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A naive nineteen year old widow becomes coarsened and cynical when she is sent to a woman's prison and is exposed to hardened criminals and sadistic guards.

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(screenplay), (story "Women Without Men") | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Betty Garde ...
Kitty Stark
...
Jeta Kovsky aka Smoochie
Lee Patrick ...
Elvira Powell
Olive Deering ...
June Roberts - Inmate
...
Isolation Matron
Gertrude Michael ...
...
Helen (as Sheila Stevens)
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Storyline

Frightened 19-year-old Marie Allen gets sent to an Illinois penitentiary for being an accomplice in an armed robbery. A sympathetic prison head tries to help, but her efforts are subverted by cruel matron Evelyn Harper. Marie's harsh experiences turn her from doe-eyed innocent to hard-nosed con. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Story of a Women's Prison Today! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 May 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Femmes en cage  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Screen Director's Playhouse broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on August 2, 1951 with Eleanor Parker reprising her film role. See more »

Goofs

When Marie Allen announces that her kitten has died, the cat opens its mouth. See more »

Quotes

Kitty Stark: Don't let it throw you, honey. You're still a kid. If you get paroled soon enough, there'll be a lotta guys that'll tumble for ya. You can even get hitched and have another kid if you're dope enough to want to. The trick's to flop out as soon as you can. Like I said, the boys can get your parole movin' fast. How 'bout it? Don't it make sense, honey? Think it over, sweetioe, but get this through your head: if you stay in here too long, you don't think of guys at all - you just get out of the ...
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User Reviews

 
"Grab A Last Look at Free Side Baby"
11 June 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The film I like to compare Caged to is not a male prison film, but rather to The Women. Although there are minor male roles in Caged and The Women have no men in it, make no mistake, this film shows a woman's world.

The world of the women's prison is light years away from those society Republican matrons of The Women, but in terms how they act it ain't too much different. It's just that things are a lot more raw than they are on free side.

The film is seen through the eyes of protagonist Eleanor Parker who drew a one to fifteen year sentence on a robbery in which her husband was killed. Due to the influence of the prison even with a relatively compassionate warden like Agnes Moorehead, by the time she leaves she's as tough a cookie as those she met and dealt with as fellow cons and as matrons.

Eleanor Parker and Hope Emerson as the wicked matron Harper both received Oscar nominations for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress respectively. Parker lost to Judy Holliday for Born Yesterday and Emerson was beaten out by Josephine Hull in Harvey. Yet the whole film is so well cast it seems a shame to single out just those two performers.

Two of the most interesting characters were Betty Garde as a tough con who runs the cell block until an enemy in the person of Lee Patrick who is a society madam arrives for a short term. There rivalry unwittingly sets up a lot of tragedy all around.

In the pre-Stonewall Hollywood, lesbianism saturates Caged as it does in few other films. Hope Emerson is always singled out, but there are more than hints of it in the characters of Garde, Patrick, and Moorehead. Look also for good performances by Ellen Corby as the loopy murderer of her abusing husband and Jan Sterling in on a prostitution rap.

I think if the cast of The Women were ever thrown into prison as they are in Caged, I think the behavior would be exactly the same. They can afford to be more civilized in some of the richest acreage of free side.


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