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Violence in a Women's Prison
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Bruno Mattei's infamous filth-fest - Uncut in HD for the first time ever.
In an over-the-top career filled with cannibals, zombies, nuns and Nazis, only EuroSleaze maestro Bruno Mattei (THE OTHER HELL, SHOCKING DARK) - along with frequent collaborators/co-writers Claudio Fragasso and Rossella Drudi (TROLL 2, ZOMBIE 3 and 4) - could take the BLACK EMANUELLE series to such insane depths of depravity. When Emanuelle (the legendary Laura Gemser) goes undercover in a penitentiary, she will endure a nightmare of sadistic guards, voracious lesbians, rat attacks, feces fights and enough graphic mayhem for a dozen women-in-prison trash epics.
Gabriele Tinti (EMANUELLE AND THE LAST CANNIBALS), Lorraine De Selle (CANNIBAL FEROX) and Franca Stoppi (BEYOND THE DARKNESS) co-star in this "classic of exploitation" (Yell Magazine) - also known as CAGED WOMEN and EMANUELLE IN PRISON - now featuring a 2k scan from an uncensored inter-positive.
Brawl in Women's Block - Interview with co-director/co-writers Claudio Fragasso and Rossella Drudi.
Archive interview with director Bruno Mattei.
One of the all-time scuzziest women-in-prison movies ever! --MonsterHunter
A women-in-prison sleazeathon! --The Spinning Image
For fans of sleazy Italian exploitation, Bruno Mattei's classic certainly offers up the goods! --DVD Talk
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I always had a negative opinion of Mattei until I watched this film. Contributing yet another episode to the expansive "Emanuelle" series, Bruno lensed this film with Laura Gemser in the title role of an undercover journalist named Laura Kendall serving time in a penitentiary in order to expose the sadistic practices occurring there. Upon her arrival in prison, Gemser first meets Doctor Moran (played by Gemser's real life husband Gabriele Tinti) for her physical checkup. As it happens, the guy is actually an inmate himself in the male wing of the penitentiary. Earning an all clear from the physician, Kendall acquaints herself with the staff and several of her fellow inmates. These people are a sordid bunch, with the female guards and cellblock bullies enthusiastically taking part in tormenting the helpless inmates. It isn't too long before our heroine falls in with a lifer by the name of Bella, one of those stock prison characters found in every film made about life behind bars. Bella keeps a pet roach in a wooden box and sagely advises Gemser on how to stay out of trouble.
What fun would the movie be if Laura Kendall stayed out of trouble? Not content to go along with the crowd, Gemser promptly tosses a bucket of detritus on a guard and then beats the hapless bull with a baton. The prison administration simply will not abide such hijinks and tosses Kendall into a solitary confinement cell packed with rats. Despite nearly dying from her encounter with the furry critters, Gemser's character still doesn't learn her lesson. She pushes every chance she gets, eventually winning the cautious Bella and a few other prisoners to her side. Matters deteriorate as the guards brutalize female inmates in ways both physical and mental, a prisoner dies in a fight over in the male wing, and a letter arrives on the desk of the warden warning of an undercover reporter attempting to dig up dirt on the prison system. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out Kendall is the journalist, so the warden and his female goons run Gemser through a series of "tortures" in order to extract information from her. She admits her identity in the end just as Doctor Moran steps in with a plan for freedom. In order to execute the plot, several of the inmates stage a "revolt" in order to buy Kendall/Emanuelle time to flee the area. Several "surprising" tragedies take place that may or may not have you wiping at your eyes over the heartbreak of it all.
I know I wiped the tears from my eyes a time or two, not from sadness but from hilarity. "Violence in a Women's Prison" is one of the funniest films I have seen in awhile. Try and keep a straight face as the cellblock goon and a few guards break in some of the new inmates. Suppress those chuckles while watching the guards' obviously fake batons flap in the breeze. Stifle those rapidly rising guffaws over the totally unconvincing performance Gemser gives as rats "attack" her. Sure, you get some gratuitous nudity, bad attitudes, and atrocious dialogue, but Mattei's film is hardly a serious contender in the genre. Heck, most of what we see here barely pushes the envelope. Having laughed at the film, I should list the good things about it. I thought the soundtrack; a thumping, synthesizer drenched score from Luigi Ceccarelli sounded great. Sometimes the music didn't match what was happening onscreen, but it still gave the picture a sort of ethereal quality that it probably didn't deserve. Moreover, the set pieces--although sparse and cheap--had a sufficiently seedy tint to them that spread to the film as a whole.
If you want serious WIP, it is out there waiting. If you just want to laugh a bit, "Violence in a Women's Prison" should be right up your alley. Leave it to Media Blasters to throw some extras on a DVD release of the film. There is a short interview with Bruno Mattei, a completely lame trailer for this film, and a few other previews for movies like Umberto Lenzi's "Spasmo." As for the picture quality, I thought it was fine for a low budget cheesefest, but the sound quality was mediocre. With frightening regularity, my sound system coughed, popped, and generally grumbled nearly every time a scene changed. It got so bad that I thought my system was on the fritz, but none of the other movies I played after this one sounded anything like this disc. The audio problems took away some of the overall enjoyment of the film, and yes, I ultimately enjoyed "Violence in a Women's Prison" despite its flaws.