Neville Brand plays a “lifer” who leads his fellow prisoners in revolt. Surprisingly, they don’t want to escape — they just want better living conditions. The parallels between this fictional story and the much-later convict uprising at Attica is underlined when Brand begins manipulating the media.
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Arguably made better because of its dynamite (pun intended) production - using real Folsom prison inmates, riot scenes have a docu, gritty urgency. Gordon, a former inmate himself, had to be searched each day just to make sure he wasn't helping the real convicts escape. The proximity to reality is supported by a text from Hard Men Peckinpah and Siegel that leaves nothing to the imagination.