Nijam ondru.. Nizhal Irandu

Nijam [ Alcatraz ].
The US has less than 5% of the world’s population. But it has almost 25% of the world’s prisoners. The country has its own history related to prisons.
Alcatraz is a small island near SFO bay, once served as a military prison starting from 1861. Since 1933, it served as a prison for US justice dept and operated for 29 years – one of the most toughest prisons in the world. 14 escape attempts were made in its history. Famous inmates were Al Capone, machine gun Kelly. Finally the prison was shutdown in 1963. Now, it is one of the famous tourist spots of US drawing million visitors in a year.
Nizhal 1 [ Escape from Alcatraz – 1979 ] – Directed by Don Siegel. Set in 1962.


This film was based on true events. It’s a gripping thriller starring Clint Eastwood. Clint is my favourite hero who has grim face, seldom talks, lean but a powerful character. He and other 2 persons device a plan and escape from the tough prison. The escape was mysterious and nobody knows the after life of the prisoners. The film neatly expresses the prison life [ no girls in the movie ],its tough life conditions and some interesting characters. Good to watch for Clint Eastwood and the interesting sequences.

Nizhal 2 [ Murder in the first – 1995 ] – Directed by Marc Rocco. Set in 1938.

For the same n simple crime of stealing $5, young James gets a warning and Henry gets a punishment. James become a lawyer and Henry goes to prison.. Two main characters – Henry was captivated for stealing $5 [ yes ! ] from a post office and sent to Alcatraz. Next big mistake was his failed escape attempt – this puts him in ‘the hole’. Hole is a dungeon without any light, with bare minimum food and continuous torture.Henry serves more than 3 years in the hole and looses his mind. When the hole sentence is completed, he comes back to the normal prison.. being mentally disturbed, he kills the other inmate [ in front of everybody ] who betrayed him during his escape attempt. Clear case for Henry to get a sentence.

The other character James takes the case and appears for defence in favour of Henry. He investigates the case and gets alcatraz and its secrets on trial. The big time trial brings the alcatraz operation [ dungeons ] to shut down.

This movie disturbs the audience right from its initial scenes. Though the movie is mostly made-up, the truth it reveals is a bothering oneThe best part in this movie is Kevin Bacon [ hollow man ] and visuals. Photography unusually roams all around the places.. Imagine the camera goes beyond the judge’s seat and takes a big round during a trial. the scene where Henry and James meet for the first time was a poem, by itself. Slightly dragging in the end but a movie to lit the emotional state of the audience. The background score carries the scenes, mostly. The dialogues are noticeable though it is a big court room drama [ A brutal warden says.. Tolerance is mistaken for kindness.. Kindness is mistaken for weakness.. we here can’t have weakness]. Also, the final dialog is a good one where Henry says back to the warden.. ‘Action: I won.. Reaction : You can’t ever take that away from me’.

Some prison based movies from my list.. [ In fact, we have prisonflicks.com a repository of prison based movies 🙂 ].

1. The Shawshank redemption [ the best picture ]
2. Green mile [ I didn’t like.. but watched for TomHanks and Thomas Newman ]
3. Papillon [ Borning ! ]
4. Dead man walking [ Susan Sarandon’s brilliant performance as nun ]

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