The story of two men on different sides of a prison riot -- the inmate leading the rebellion and the young guard trapped in the revolt, who poses as a prisoner in a desperate attempt to survive the ordeal.
The family man Wade Porter is living the American Dream with his girlfriend Laura and their son Michael: they have a nice house, he has just raised a loan to make his company grow and they are going to get married. However their dream becomes a nightmare when Wade unintentionally kills a burglar that had broken into their house in the middle of the night on his lawn. He is sent to trial and accepts a deal proposed by the prosecutor, being sentenced to three years in prison. During the transportation, there is an incident in the bus and Wade is framed and sent to the maximum security wing under the command of the corrupt Lieutenant Jackson. His cell-mate John Smith that was sentenced to life revenging the death of his family befriends Wade and gives helpful advices and hope to Wade to return to his family. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Val Kilmer, a method actor who heavily researched the role, elected not to portray his character in a Utopian or chiseled capacity. Instead, Kilmer wanted to convey a nihilistic approach in which the years of confinement visibly take a toll physically and emotionally on the character. See more »
In the beginning of the movie John refers back to how his daughter would have been 27 at that time but by the tattoo calender on his arm she should have only been 22 or 23. See more »
[first words to his new cell mate]
You jerk off? Face the wall. You break wind? Put your ass to the door. You shit or piss? In the can. You do all that, we'll get along famously.
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I was expecting another prison movie with just more rapes and violence, but i was pleasantly surprised. Val Kilmer is great and Stephen Dorff is great as well. It reminded me a little of The Shawshank redemption and an Innocent man. It shows how difficult life can be for someone whom lives a hardworking and honest life to enter the prison system filled with career criminals and gang members.
This movie encompasses friendships, hardships, and injustices. Even though the circumstances between the characters and the viewers are quite different, you don't feel that far removed from what the characters are going through.
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