Add a Review

  • The story really picks up when the new warden decides it's time for the juvenile joint to go co-ed! Decent acting and crowd choreography make this one of director Cahn's most enjoyable efforts. The riot scenes and the dance scenes are very well handled, and Scott Marlowe is effective as the "Rebel with Claws".
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I had a pretty good idea how "Riot in Juvenile Prison" would play out even before I started to watch it. With the movie being made in the 1950s, I correctly guessed that all the "youths" would be played by actors who were in their early 20s at their youngest. I also correctly guessed that what might have been considered hard-hitting stuff back in 1959 would play out in an extremely tame manner more than fifty years later. Also, if you have seen even just one other prison drama that involves do-gooders trying to reform the system and hardened prisoners, the way this version unfolds will hold absolutely no surprises at all. The only thing I didn't predict was how thin the characters would be. For example, when it comes to the juvenile prisoners, we only learn the background and criminal record of just ONE of the juvenile prisoners. The only real positive attribute the movie can boast is that its production values are somewhat higher than most other juvenile delinquent productions of this period.
  • Reviewer msroz is really on target. The film's competently made, performed, and better than expected given the sleazy title. Trouble is, as msroz points out, the story's a clich√© about a humane reformer (Thor) bringing kindness to a brutal reform school for boys. He's opposed by the resident warden (Hoyt) who only grudgingly cooperates. Not exactly cutting-edge material for its time.

    Unfortunately, the screenplay includes two big stretches. First is the expected Hollywood ending that's an abrupt reversal of what's gone before. Second-- in my book at least-- is making the school co-educational. I just can't see how mixing teen-age girls with hormonally-driven boys is going to make anyone's job easier or more effective. Nonetheless, it does set up an audience-pleasing battle of the bra's, especially Dorothy Provine, who's soon to take a few steps up the Hollywood ladder and I can see why.

    Shouldn't overlook several of Hollywood's best baddies of the period. We've got Scott Marlowe who snarled with the best of the teenage punks, as he does here. Then there's John Hoyt, his cruel face and manner perfect for a tough warden. And shouldn't neglect Richard Reeves as the hulking guard, ever an intimidating screen presence.

    All in all, it's an excellent cast for a B-movie independent. So, if you can overlook some of the stretches, the film's got genuine compensations.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    ***SPOILERS*** 1959 troubled youth movie with the entire cast of juvenile delinquents made up of white clean cut looking collage boys & girls with not a single inner city-Hispanic & African/America-teen in sight has bad boy Eddie Bassett, Scott Marlowe, lead not one but two major revolts against the prison administration that has him finally realize just how futile his efforts were. That's when Eddie and his fellow convicts are surrounded by the police and national guard in the warden's office and about to be blown to bits. This all started earlier when Eddie staged his first prison escape when two of his fellow prisoners were gunned down, after shooting at the prison guards,by prison guard Andy, Richard Reeves.

    It's when prison psychiatrist Paul A. Furman,Jerome Thor, was put in charge of the "Joint" his policy of treating the unruly teenagers like human beings not hard core convicts that the response to it was amazing. At first not starting any trouble and getting along with each other-The prisoners and prison guards-trouble soon started brewing when Dr. Furman introduced women convicts into the place to keep the sex starved boys entertained. That blew Dr. Furman's plan to keep order in the place with the sex crazed Stu Killion, Richard Tyler,losing it during a Saturday night dance and attacking and raping woman prisoner Kitty Anderson,Virgina Aldridge,in the men's locker room.

    Eddie who already was in hot water when he and his boys attacked and worked over Dr. Furman, who refused to press charges, now got into a deeper hole when he started a second uprising at the "Joint" in order to get his hands on prison guard Andy whom he held responsible for gunning down two of his friends while trying to escape! the revolt fizzled out when Dr. Furman, letting bygones be bygones, in risking his life talked Eddie and his fellow prisoners to give themselves up before things really got out of hand and someone got killed.

    One of the many troubled youth movies to come out of the 1950's Hollywood that went out of its way to show youths like Eddie in a positive light not in what they did but in the reasons that made them that way. In Eddie's case it's revealed under hypnosis that he was traumatized at a young age when on his 7th birthday his drunken father coming home from work smashed his head in while his mom, who was too drunk to help him, just sat by and did nothing!