7.1/10
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26 user 18 critic

Ghosts... of the Civil Dead (1988)

Prison gangs clash in a high-tech security jail where there are no rules.

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2 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Wenzil
Mike Bishop ...
David Yale
Chris DeRose ...
Grezner
Kevin Mackey ...
Glover
Dave Mason ...
Lilly
...
Maynard
Bogdan Koca ...
Waychek
Freddo Dierck ...
Robbins
Vincent Gil ...
Ruben
M.E. Duncan ...
Junkie 1
Nick Seferi ...
Junkie 2
Tony Clark ...
Simone
Yilmaz Tuhan ...
Food King
Ian Mortimer ...
Jack
Mick King ...
Edwin Neal
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Storyline

The inmates and guards of a modern, clean and efficient maximum security wing are slowly and increasingly brutalised until they erupt in violence. Dark and macabre, and based in truth, the story is told in a traditional dramatic style combined with telephone interviews and narration. Written by alpha sixty <alpha60@alphaville.apana.org.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 June 1989 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

Ghosts... of the Civil Dead - avoimien ovien päivä helvetissä  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Nick Cave used his experience in local lock up to help write the film, he overheard another inmate say to the police guard "Come here so I can spit in your eye!!" See more »

Quotes

Maynard: Officer, come here. I wanna spit in your fucking eye!
See more »

Connections

Features Forced Entry (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Hippy
(uncredited)
Performed by Alan Parker
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User Reviews

 
Very powerful and disturbing
20 May 2002 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

As other reviewers have all said, this film by John Hillcoat, is extremely disturbing and scary portrait of society and prison. The film is located in maximum security modern prison in which all the most dangerous criminals and psychopaths are locked in. There are no "heroic" characters and everyone is bad and rotten inside. They who want to get rid of it, commit a suicide and thus get a peace to their soul. Very pessimistic and provoking cinema, and should be seen by all politicians and "leaders."

The film portrays a society in its collapsing point in which government's attempts to turn things into better fail miserably, and nobody heals in this sick and mean spirited world we live in. There is a need for violence and violation, but nobody knows why. It feels good to kill someone and kick others to pieces. The wicked core of human nature should be exterminated but it is not possible, because the "good" are actually as bad inside as the people behind the bars. The wardens are no better than the inmates and no one is safe in the prison. The theme of Ghosts..is wickedness and total depravity which seems not to have any limits. The sadistic events in the prison in the name of justice only give new reasons for violence and mayhem. The last image of the film tells it all, and is very frightening. A man is now ready to return to society as a healed criminal....or maybe not.

Nick Cave plays here one of the most evil and dangerous devils ever captured on film. He is total psychopath who has no motivations or reasons, only rage, anger and need for blood (even his own.) It is scary to see this kind of characters in film, because we look at the mirror while seeing the film. This really happens and exists and the character of Cave can be seen also as a symbol to be interpreted.

Very frightening "prison" movie and pessimistic nihilism. So don't try to watch if you prefer nice and entertaining movies. Demanding cinema and won't leave the viewer alone very easily. 8/10


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