MURDER IN THE FIRST

Content -2
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: January 20, 1995

Starring: Kevin Bacon, Christian Slater,
Gary Oldman, Embeth Davidtz,
Bill Macy, Brad Douriff, & Ben
Stack

Genre: Drama

Audience:

Rating: R

Runtime: 120 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Director: Marc Rocco

Executive Producer:

Producer: Marc Frydman & Mark Wolper

Writer: Dan Gordon

Address Comments To:

Content:

(B, LLL, VV, SS, NN) Moral worldview portraying dedicated efforts to end inhumane treatment of prisoners at Alcatraz; 23 obscenities & 10 profanities; intense (though limited) portrayal of prison brutality -- prolonged solitary confinement, beatings, cutting prisoner with a razor (off camera), & man stabbed to death; brief depiction of attempted fornication & implied oral sex; and, brief rear male nudity.

Summary:

Based on historical events, MURDER IN THE FIRST is an extraordinary but intense courtroom drama centering on the inhumane treatment of prisoners at Alcatraz a half century ago. Kevin Bacon and Christian Slater star as a prisoner on trial for killing another inmate and the young public defender who ultimately puts the entire prison on trial. Some initial depictions of prison brutality and an attempted sexual encounter mar this expertly acted, written and photographed movie.

Review:

Based on historical events, MURDER IN THE FIRST is an extraordinary but intense courtroom drama centering on the inhumane treatment of prisoners behind the imposing walls of Alcatraz a half century ago. Kevin Bacon delivers an Oscar-caliber performance as a prisoner on trial for killing another inmate, and Christian Slater stars as the young public defender who ultimately puts the entire prison on trial. Initially imprisoned as a teenager for the theft of a five dollar bill, prolonged and cruel mistreatment turns Henri into a broken man, virtually out of his mind. His rookie public defender feels compassion and determines to put an end to the prison atrocities.

Director Marc Rocco utilizes a highly visual storytelling style to complement an intelligent script. However, the most startling aspect of MURDER IN THE FIRST is Kevin Bacon's remarkable performance. In his use of both physical and vocal mannerisms to convey the utter desolation of a young man pushed beyond the limits of his endurance for suffering, he is extraordinary. Some initial depictions of prison brutality and an attempted sexual encounter mar this expertly directed movie about the importance of seeking truth and serving "the least of these" behind prison walls.

In Brief: