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Prison Song (2001)

R  |   |  Drama  |  27 April 2001 (USA)
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A young man lives and learns while growing up on the street and in and out of correctional facilities.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Elijah Dixon
Eric McCollum ...
Thomas Wilson (as Eric 'Ace Money' McCollum)
Denee Rivera ...
Jolie Martinez
Justin 'DJ' Spaulding ...
Young Elijah
Snow ...
Officer McIntyre
Bobbito Garcia ...
Brown (as 'Bobbito' Robert Garcia)
Clay Da Raider ...
Big Pete
Uncle Cee
C.O. Vilar (as Edil 'Casper' Martinez)
Phone Kid
Mateo Gómez ...
Mr. Gonzalez


A young man lives and learns while growing up on the street and in and out of correctional facilities.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and brief sexual content




Release Date:

27 April 2001 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Film was originally intended to be a full-fledged musical, but this tested poorly with audiences, so most of the musical numbers - except the most essential to the story - were cut. This helps explain the mysterious appearance of Elvis Costello in two roles in which he does very little. See more »


A Teacher's Tale (Oh Well)
Elvis Costello
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User Reviews

Q-Tip Tries To Plug Some Tunes . Not The film I Expected
13 July 2013 | by (Isle Of Bute , Scotland) – See all my reviews

The name Darnell Martin attracted me to this movie . Martin was a director of season one of the prison drama OZ which is my all time favourite drama show to have come out of America . Martin was in my humble opinion the best director of the show and made the stand out episodes of the series including the debut episode that gripped me tighter than a vice . The synopsis of PRISON SONG led me to believe I'd be watching more of the same . Did I ? Well yes and no

The story is the well worn one of a ghetto kid called Elijah who struggling against the crushing adversity of his environment finds he has a special talent for photography and as he grows up he gets a place at college . What could possibly go wrong ? Destiny apparently because Elijah finds himself facing some hard time

If Martin had concentrated on this we'd get a tough prison movie which while seeing it all before would have been a tough gritty film . You have to take in to account as to who the cast are Q-Tip and Mary J Blige which means we get a pumping soundtrack which will prejudice your opinion . If you enjoy hearing a thump thump thump rap track involving I think the word is " mother figures " then this will enhance your feelings for the movie . If like me you don't then you'll be constantly irritated by the soundtrack

This is a pity because PRISON SONG does just about works as a tough prison drama but only intermittently . The film starts by giving out some sociological figures by pointing out crime stats involving African American men but then quickly gives up the pretence of any social comment and concentrates on the music . At the end of the day PRISON SONG suffers from too much song and not enough prison

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