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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 »
(There may be Spoilers) Prison drama set in a woman's prison where the head superintendent Amelia Van Zandt, Ida Lupino,is far more dangerous to the inmates as well as the prison staff then the most hardened criminals in there.
Constantly having the women under her control beaten and abused, which Amelia herself is very found of doing, creates a climate of terror in he clink that erupts into a full-scale prison riot at the end of the movie. We first get to see Amelia in action as soon as the movie "Women's Prison" starts with her handling of new prisoner Helene Jensen, Phillis Thaxter. Helene convicted of manslaughter, she ran over a little girl, is put into isolation and by the next day is almost dead from shock. This despite the objections by the prison doctor Crane, Howard Duff,that keeping Helene in a cell by herself for any period of time may well kill her.
The women's prison being connected to a mans prison is also causing problems with prisoner Glen Burton,Warren Stevens, sneaking into the women's lockup and having, among other things, conjugal relations with his wife who's a prisoner like himself Joan, Audrey Tottor, that leads to her becoming pregnant.With the news of Joan's pregnancy hitting Warden Block, Barry Kelly, like a lighting bolt he has Women Superintendent Amelia Van Zandt put on the carpet. Warden Block warns her that if she doesn't find out how Joan's husband Glen, it seems obvious to everyone that he's the baby's father,got into the women's section of the prison she'll be out of a job.
Amelia now in a panic of losing her job as head of the women's prison has poor Joan, who doesn't know how Glen got into the women's prison, beaten and tortured to the point where she lapse into a coma. Dr. Crane finding out what was happening to Joan has both Amelia and Warden Block put on notice that he'll report them to higher ups by, if Joan passes away, signing Joan Burton's death certificate with the cause of her death being murder. Thing quickly start to get out of hand when the women prisoners lead by Joan's friend and cell-mate Brenda, Jan Sterling, start a hunger strike over the treatment Joan got from Amelia and that leads to a prison takeover by the women prisoners with Amelia taken hostage.
Glen again breaking into the womens wing of the prison finds his wife in the hospital ward on life-support being attended by Dr. Crane. After Joan tells Glen she'll be waiting for him, no matter how long it takes with their child, to greet him when he's finally released from prison she suddenly passes away! That drives Glen into a mad frenzy pulling out a gun and going looking for his wife's murder the universally, by now everyone in the movie, hated Superintendent Amelia Van Zandt.
Wild shootout with Glen braving bullets and tear gas canisters to get to Amelia and meet out justice for what she did to his wife Joan. Amelia is save by Dr. Crane from being beaten and shot to death by the women inmates and Glen, who's himself shot by the prison guards. You can see by now that Amelia's mind already snapped and she's to end up in a straight-jacket and padded cell like many of the women prisoners she put under the same conditions due to her sadistic and hateful dislike of the women that she was in charge of.
It later turned out that Amlia's inhuman actions were the result of her not being able to attract any man, even though she was very attractive, to marry her because of her rottenness and unbalanced and overly suspicious mindset.
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