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A women's prison camp is located deep in the tropical rain forest. Sadistic guards and a warden from hell make life almost unbearable for the inmates, and any infraction of the rules is ... See full summary »
A girl is caught in a drug bust and sent to the hoosegow. The iron-handed superintendent takes exception to a skit performed by the girls and takes punitive steps, aided by the sadistic doctor who is doing illegal electroshock experiments and raping drugged prisoners. After a while the prisoners put away their petty differences and plan the Big Prison Escape. Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
Light on the sleaze, but still an excellent women in prison flick!
When I think 'Women in Prison', my mind often goes to sleazy Italian/Spanish productions by directors such as Jess Franco and Bruno Mattei; and while these films are often very sleazy, they're also very samey and once you've seen one; you might as well have seen them all. I have to admit that these types of films generally aren't my favourites; but in fact the idea of women behind bars has been done very well on several occasions outside of Italy and Spain; and Roger Corman's New World Pictures is responsible for some of the best of them. Caged Heat is the directorial debut of Oscar-winning director Jonathan Demme, and it's a well done little flick with plenty of entertainment value! Naturally, the film centres on the story of a girl who is caught committing crime and sent to a women's' prison where she is introduced to a host of violent inmates. This prison is ruled over by the stuff wheelchair bound Superintendent McQueen; and she takes offence to a play put on by the girls; leading them to plot an escape.
This film is much lighter on the sleaze than I'm used to in a women in prison flick; but this is more than compensated for by some great action scenes and dialogue and that's what ensures Caged Heat entertains throughout. It does have to be said that the plot is not particularly original or ambitious and basically follows a structure similar to many other women in prison films that came before it; but that's not such a big problem. The film never gets boring and is peppered with standout scenes; including an escape attempt while out working in a field and a bank robbery. The film is helped along by assured direction from the man who would go on to helm the masterpiece The Silence of the Lambs and a great cast with plenty of standouts; including best of all the legendary Barbara Steele in the role of the head prison warden. Overall, Caged Heat may not leave the viewer with much to think about by the end; but it's a brilliantly entertaining little grindhouse flick and anyone that enjoys this type of film will surely want to track it down.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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