A hitchhiker named Martel Gordone gets in a fight with two bikers over a prostitute, and one of the bikers is killed. Gordone is arrested and sent to prison, where he joins the prison's ...
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A native young girl from the South moves in with her relatives in a Los Angeles ghetto. At first she is made fun of, but eventually she is accepted and plots to rob a bank to raise bail ... See full summary »
Ernest Williams II,
Charles D. Brooks III
A hitchhiker named Martel Gordone gets in a fight with two bikers over a prostitute, and one of the bikers is killed. Gordone is arrested and sent to prison, where he joins the prison's boxing team in an effort to secure an early parole and to establish his dominance over the prison's toughest gang. Written by
I read in an article that "Penitentiary" is one of John Singelton's favorite films. I can see why. It is an film that is kind of like an "acquired taste". It has its own audience. Hard-hitting, intense, and memorable, with some very well done casting, especially bad-man Badja Djola as "Half Dead". The musical score takes great risks that ultimately pay off. There is one part during the terrific fight scene between Too-Sweet and Half-Dead where there is no score, just screeching. Another interesting point, in Penitentiary 2, Ernie Hudson is just as good as Half-Dead's replacement.
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