Promising beginning which doesn't deliver in the end
Being a fan of actress Emma Suarez, I went to see this film full of anticipation. The film starts off with bleak scenes of crime and punishment, sceneries of an all male world where ruthless police are at war with equally brutal criminals. Men devoid of human consideration and gentility. A world where humans are nothing less than wild beasts, and where their spirits are broken by sadistic guards. After this relentlessly grim opening, Emma Suarez's character arrives. She is the prison's doctor who is shocked by the conditions in which the inmates live. She falls in love with one of the inmates, who we suddenly come to see as noble savage rather than ruthless killer. The moments of tenderness which she is able to give through the excuse of tending to her patient, are very intense. Too soon however the movie swiftly moves on to tell the story of how she starts a campaign to stop the terrible prison conditions. Even though it is very educational, it doesn't make for good drama. The movie focuses in a corny and cheesy manner on the personal relationship between delinquent's hussy, Emma, and her bit of rough. The movie's tone changes completely and it is af if we are suddenly watching another movie. The director should not have tried to tie in 20 years of development, but simply have limited himself to the early years, rather than drag the story on, and on, until it becomes a sugary mess in which inmates, prisoner's wives, police guards and prison directors suddenly love each other to bits.
- Oct 28, 2004
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