Life at a 1950s women's maximum security prison where the warden and the guards are as brutal as the inmates.

Director:

Writers:

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

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Over-Exposed (1956)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Sexy blonde dance club girl learns the photography trade and moves to New York in pursuit of a new career.

Director: Lewis Seiler
Stars: Cleo Moore, Richard Crenna, Isobel Elsom
Night Editor (1946)
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

"Night Editor" was based on the already existing radio program in which a newspaper editor would recount the 'inside story' of some bit newspaper story, and later became a television series... See full summary »

Director: Henry Levin
Stars: William Gargan, Janis Carter, Jeff Donnell
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Another of the "Fate and Irony" films from director-writer-producer-actor Hugo Haas but this one has less hair-shirt torment than most of his offerings, although his camera, as usual, ... See full summary »

Director: Hugo Haas
Stars: Cleo Moore, Hugo Haas, Glenn Langan
Film-Noir | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When a woman he meets is murdered, a soon to be drafted sailor has until dawn to find the killer, aided by a weary dance hall girl.

Director: Harold Clurman
Stars: Susan Hayward, Bill Williams, Paul Lukas
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A doctor uses special eye drops to give himself x-ray vision, but the new power has disastrous consequences.

Director: Roger Corman
Stars: Ray Milland, Diana Van der Vlis, Harold J. Stone
Two of a Kind (1951)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A lawyer for a rich elderly industrialist works out a complex inheritance scam to pass off a con as the industrialist's long-lost son and claim the huge inheritance.

Director: Henry Levin
Stars: Edmond O'Brien, Lizabeth Scott, Terry Moore
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

One of the first science fiction films to attempt a high level of accurate technical detail tells the story of the first trip to the moon.

Director: Irving Pichel
Stars: John Archer, Warner Anderson, Tom Powers
Caged (1950)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

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.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Eleanor Parker, Agnes Moorehead, Ellen Corby
Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Respectable citizens receive anonymous letters revealing their adulterous relationships.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Linda Darnell, Charles Boyer, Michael Rennie
Tension (1949)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A meek pharmacist creates an alternate identity under which he plans to murder the bullying liquor salesman who has become his wife's lover.

Director: John Berry
Stars: Richard Basehart, Audrey Totter, Cyd Charisse
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A renowned and relentless Paris detective takes his first vacation in eleven years at a small inn in the French countryside. There he meets and falls in love with the hotelier's daughter, ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: Steven Geray, Micheline Cheirel, Eugene Borden
Illegal (1955)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After an overly aggressive district attorney unknowingly sends an innocent man to the chair, he resigns, turns to drinking, and acquires a criminal clientèle.

Director: Lewis Allen
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Nina Foch, Hugh Marlowe
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Amelia van Zandt
...
Brenda Martin
Cleo Moore ...
Mae
Audrey Totter ...
Joan Burton
...
Helene Jensen
...
Dr. Crane
...
Glen Burton
Barry Kelley ...
Warden Brock
Gertrude Michael ...
Chief Matron Sturgess
Vivian Marshall ...
Dottie LaRose
...
Matron Saunders
...
Don Jensen
Adelle August ...
Grace
...
Chief Guard Tierney
...
Polyclinic 'Polly' Jones
Edit

Storyline

During the 1950s, two women inmates are sent to a maximum security state prison. One of the two women is a repeat offender who knows many of the inmates and guards at the prison. She almost feels like returning home to her prison family. The other woman is a decent person, a first-time offender who's no criminal.She unintentionally killed a child in a car accident. She's very young, married, and is terrified of being in prison. Her mental state is very fragile. The women's prison is adjacent to the men's prison. The two prisons are separated by a high wall but there are secret ways of crossing from one prison into the other. Warden Brock is in charge of the men's prison while Amelia van Zandt is the heartless brutal director of the women's prison. The guards are severe and not very friendly, since, they too, fear the wrath of their female warden van Zandt. The only ray of hope and decency in this earthly inferno is the prison doctor, Dr. Crane. However, the good doctor has little ... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Inside the BIG HOUSE for women! (US insert) See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

February 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Femmes en prison  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Due to film's popularity in the 1980s, Sony Pictures released it in the boxed set Bad Girls of Film Noir: Volume II. See more »

Goofs

During a sequence showing concurrent events at a co-ed prison (men on one side of wall, women on the other), the women are seen in the yard in sunny weather with short-sleeved uniforms, while the men's side is rainy, with prisoners in heavy coats. See more »

Quotes

Brenda Martin: Dottie's from show business.
Dotty LaRose: Yeah, stripteaser. But I always wanted to do impersonations. I wanted to take off people, not my clothes, and thats why I am doing a stretch from ten to life.
Helene Jensen: Ten to life for just taking off your clothes?
Dotty LaRose: No. I shot my agent.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fright Night Part 2 (1988) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Some great smaller parts grow large, and Lupino is up against them all...
25 February 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Women's Prison (1955)

This highlights Ida Lupino, and though her role is central it is small. She plays that hardened, selfish "dame" she pulled off in many of her movies like no one else, in this case a prison warden. Lupino is never campy like Bette Davis, or sultry like many others (even when she wants to be). She's also not idiosyncratic like Gloria Grahame, and this is good and bad. Lupino here and often elsewhere is a stalwart presence--she holds up her end of the bargain in any scene, without stealing the scene.

Her counterpart, even though this is mainly a woman's movie top to bottom, is the doctor played by Howard Duff. But the real stars are the prisoners, an array of women both confident and downtrodden. (Look for Juanita Moore, from "Imitation of Life.") Having these women revolt against Lupino's evilness is what we all want, and it's quite a drama.

There are many times when you will groan or laugh at what the plot gets away with (like the husband who sneaks in to see his wife, or the warden of the men's prison in general), but you'll really love the best parts, the best character actors who are really filled with character, and the fast plot. A good short fun one.


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Pure garbage....and I loved every minute of it. apriceaboverubies29
Discuss Women's Prison (1955) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?