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Shock Corridor (1963)

Not Rated | | Drama, Mystery | 19 June 1964 (Italy)
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ON DISC
Bent on winning a Pulitzer Prize, a journalist commits himself to a mental institution to solve a strange and unclear murder.

Director:

Samuel Fuller

Writer:

Samuel Fuller
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Breck ... Johnny Barrett
Constance Towers ... Cathy
Gene Evans ... Boden
James Best ... Stuart
Hari Rhodes ... Trent
Larry Tucker Larry Tucker ... Pagliacci
Paul Dubov Paul Dubov ... Dr. J.L. Menkin
Chuck Roberson ... Wilkes
Neyle Morrow ... Psycho
John Matthews John Matthews ... Dr. L.G. Cristo
Bill Zuckert ... 'Swanee' Swanson (as William Zuckert)
John Craig John Craig ... Lloyd
Philip Ahn ... Dr. Fong
Frank Gerstle ... Lt. Kane
Rachel Romen Rachel Romen ... Singing Nympho
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Storyline

Johnny Barrett, an ambitious journalist, is determined to win a Pulitzer Prize by solving a murder committed in a lunatic asylum and witnessed only by three inmates, from whom the police have been unable to extract the information. With the connivance of a psychiatrist, and the reluctant help of his girlfriend, he succeeds in having himself declared insane and sent to the asylum. There he slowly tracks down and interviews the witnesses - but things are stranger than they seem ... Written by David Levene <D.S.Levene@durham.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"Shock Corridor" Opens the Door to Sights You've Never Seen Before! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 June 1964 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Straightjacket See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Allied Artists Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Ryder Sound Services)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Samuel Fuller, the film was shot in 10 days, on one set, with no exteriors. See more »

Goofs

When talking to the police near the beginning of the movie, when shot from the back, Cathy's coat collar is up, but when we see her from the front, her collar is down. See more »

Quotes

Wilkes: I used to work in the Female Wing. But the "Nympho Ward" got too dangerous for me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The biblical quote "Whom God wishes to destroy, he first makes mad". Euripides 425 B.C." appears at the beginning and end. See more »

Connections

Referenced in I Am Curious, Film (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Disturbing look at mental wards has its moments...needs better script...
29 June 2010 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

Samuel Fuller's direction helps keep SHOCK CORRIDOR watchable but the script is never valid enough to make the film anything more than an interesting experiment that is only half successful.

PETER BRECK does a good job as a newspaper reporter with only one thought on his mind. ("Who killed Slade in the kitchen?"). He goes undercover at a mental institute in order to uncover the truth. His girl friend CONSTANCE TOWERS agrees to help get him get incarcerated on the pretense that he's her brother and tried to rape her.

That premise alone is hard to make believable the quick succession of events that lead to Breck's being shoved into a psycho ward. Director Fuller lets the camera discover several other rather interesting patients but none of them are fully developed as characters we can care about.

Without revealing the disturbing ending, let me just say you're liable to get hooked into watching the film if you happen to catch it from the start. It's worth a watch, if only to see where all the story strands are going.

But when it's all over, you have to wonder whether anyone can really take the story seriously. Good try though--and Breck really gives his all to his volatile bursts of temper.


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