11 user 4 critic

Experiment Alcatraz (1950)

Approved | | Crime, Mystery | 21 November 1950 (USA)
A doctor tests his theory that blood diseases can be cured by atomic radiation by using prison inmates as experiments.



(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When a brutal police detective Lt. murders a bookmaker's runner for $25,000 in cash, a deaf mute sees him do it, and now he finds he must kill again to cover his tracks.

Directors: Howard W. Koch, Edmond O'Brien
Stars: Edmond O'Brien, John Agar, Marla English
Certificate: Passed Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.4/10 X  

An unusual radioactive rock on the sea bottom mutates the ocean life into a horrible monster. When charred, radioactive bodies begin to drift ashore a scientist and government agent ... See full summary »

Director: Dan Milner
Stars: Kent Taylor, Cathy Downs, Michael Whalen
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A giant prehistoric praying mantis, recently freed from the Arctic ice, voraciously preys on American military at the DEW Line and works its way south.

Director: Nathan Juran
Stars: Craig Stevens, William Hopper, Alix Talton
Cornered (1945)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Canadian flyer Laurence Gerard finds that his wife has been murdered by a French collaborator. His quest for justice leads him to Switzerland and Argentina.

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Dick Powell, Walter Slezak, Micheline Cheirel
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The 1946-1947 U.S. military expedition to explore and map Antarctica, led by Admiral Richard E. Byrd, is presented from its planning stages through its successful completion.

Stars: Robert Montgomery, Robert Taylor, Van Heflin
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Opening with a car crash and a decapitation, the story is told in flashback as Jack and Doc become involved with a man who tells them that he will die in just such a manner in three days' ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Levin
Stars: Jim Bannon, Nina Foch, George Macready
Jeopardy (1953)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A family vacationing on the coast of Mexico have to cope with multiple threats to their safety.

Director: John Sturges
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Barry Sullivan, Ralph Meeker
Crack-Up (1946)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Art curator George Steele experiences a train wreck...which never happened. Is he cracking up, or the victim of a plot?

Director: Irving Reis
Stars: Pat O'Brien, Claire Trevor, Herbert Marshall
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Richard Burton plays a Scottish Army officer put in charge of a disparate band of ANZAC troops on the perimeter of Tobruk with the German Army doing their best to dislodge them.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Richard Burton, James Mason, Robert Newton
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A young painter stumbles upon an assortment of odd characters at an English estate where he has been hired to give art lessons to beautiful Laura Fairlie. Among them are Anne Catherick, a ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Godfrey
Stars: Alexis Smith, Eleanor Parker, Sydney Greenstreet
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A multinational group of train passengers become involved in a post-World War II Nazi assassination plot.

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Merle Oberon, Robert Ryan, Charles Korvin
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When Clementi Suborin is found murdered, his secretary recounts to the police the story of his rise from Czech refugee to ultra-rich New Yorker. The tale of betrayal, womanising and fraud ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Martin
Stars: George Sanders, Yvonne De Carlo, Zsa Zsa Gabor


Cast overview:
Dr. Ross Williams
Lt. Joan McKenna
Walter Kingsford ...
Dr. J.P. Finley
Lynne Carter ...
Ethel Ganz
Barry Morgan
Kim Spalding ...
Duke Shaw
Sam Scar ...
Eddie Ganz
Col. Harris
Dan Staley
Max Henry
Jim Carlton - Realtor
Lewis Martin ...
Asst. District Attorney Walton (as Louis Martin)
Richard 'Dick' McKenna
Raymond Largay ...
Warden Keaton


A doctor tests his theory that blood diseases can be cured by atomic radiation by using prison inmates as experiments.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Radioactive drug test an alibi for murder!


Crime | Mystery


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

21 November 1950 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Dr. Williams takes the cab to the Ace High Club in Tahoe, and is being followed by another car, they both depart a highway turn-off going in one direction. In the very next shot, without the camera position being moved at all, the two cars are shown going in the opposite direction past the very same location as the previous shot. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A real head-scratcher from one of the true Kings of the Bs!!
18 January 2010 | by See all my reviews

EXPERIMENT ALCATRAZ (1950) is another in a very long line of ultra-cheap curios from the prodigiously prolific Edward L. Cahn, one of the undisputed "Kings of the Bs." Produced independently and picked up for theatrical distribution by RKO before eventually evaporating into the ethers of obscurity, this murky little gem ranks as one of Cahn's more interesting films.

Dr. Ross Williams (John Howard) and his crack team of army physicians are certain that by blasting "radioactive isotopes" into human guinea pigs, medical science will find a cure for a rare blood disease. A group of five Alcatraz lifers are given the opportunity to gain their freedom if they're willing to subject themselves to this hazardous and radical medical experiment. The hardened cons, led by the grizzled Barry Morgan (Robert Shayne, perennial good guy Inspector Henderson on TV's Superman) are quick to play ball without any illusions of altruism; their only interest is getting out of the can and this is clearly the only shot they're ever likely to get. But something goes horribly, weirdly wrong and Morgan winds up murdering one of the other cons in the aftermath of the experiment, throwing Dr. Williams' theory and, for that matter, entire medical career into jeopardy. The resulting mystery surrounding the peculiar events taking place at Alcatraz forms the basis for the remainder of this quirky drama.

While perhaps not as sharply drawn as other notable low budget noirs from the late 40s and early 50s, EXPERIMENT ALCATRAZ nevertheless earns its stripes through the sheer weirdness of its far-fetched story and the unexpected detours it takes along the way. At fifty-seven minutes, it can hardly be faulted for overstaying its welcome.

Edward L. Cahn had an incredible career in Hollywood, directing countless low budget features over a thirty-year period, including such classics as MAIN STREET AFTER DARK (1945), THE GAS HOUSE KIDS IN Hollywood (1947), DESTINATION MURDER (1950), CREATURE WITH THE ATOM BRAIN (1955), GIRLS IN PRISON (1956), SHAKE RATTLE & ROCK (1956), VOODOO WOMAN (1957), MOTORCYCLE GANG (1957), INVASION OF THE SAUCER MEN (1957), IT! THE TERROR FROM BEYOND SPACE (1958), RIOT IN JUVENILE PRISON (1959), GUNS, GIRLS & GANGSTERS (1959) and CAGE OF EVIL (1960).

8 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 11 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Watch the Latest Episode of "The IMDb Show"

Zach Braff tackles acting and directing on his new show "Alex, Inc.," and we take a look at the 15 most bingeable TV shows of all time.

Watch the show