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Women prisoners strike up a friendship with a young law student who works as a part-time prison guard. Together they discover that a corporation funds and is profitting from the plantation-like work environment they are forced to work under. In a botched attempt to organize a protest against their "slave labor", the women take over the prison - A rare glimpse of the effects of the prison industrial complex on female inmates. Written by
L. J. Allen-2 (Leslye Allen)
Written by CARLOS D. WILSON, LOUIS W. WILSON, RICARDO A. WILSON, M.D., WILFREDO R. WILSON
Performed by Mandrill
Courtesy of WILSON BROS. RECORDS
Published by WILSON BROS. PUBLISHING (ASCAP) See more »
Not just a great movie, but an extremely important one.
CIVIL BRAND is a story which tells of a women's prison in which the inmates are forced to work as slaves, and are exploited as little more than animals. True, we've all seen this in SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION, where convicts are put to physical labor, but it's always been presented as an acceptable situation. A man robs a store and kills the clerk, so why not have him pound out license plates and working on road construction crews?
CIVIL BRAND offers a fresh look at the Prison-Industrial Complex, attacking the issue from several different angles. For one thing, the inmates aren't working on roads or some kind of community service- they're making clothes for department stores. A more provocative approach, though, is the fact that these slaves are female, a scenario that folks are not used to considering. Outstanding performances by LisaRaye, Mos Def, Clifton Powell, MC Lyte, Monica Calhoun, Lark Voorhies, and the sensational N'Bushe Wright (the lady Panther from DEAD PRESIDENTS who is one of the most talented people acting in Cinema today, not to mention drop-dead gorgeous), powerful cinematography, and brutal honesty come together to make CIVIL BRAND not just a great movie, but an extremely important one.
(c) Jake McGee - Get Underground
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