When wealthy aircraft engineer Jimmie Rainwood (Selleck) is first shot, then framed by a pair of carelessly corrupt drug (taking) cops, his cosily ordered world is thrown into chaos. Considering himself a 'model citizen' (with only an old marijuana conviction to blot his copybook), Rainwood soon discovers that while the law may be an ass, his own ass is in serious danger. Sentenced to prison, where warring gangs of blacks and whites beat , rape and humiliate each other, the naive idealist is taken under the wing of veteran inmate Virgil Cane (Abraham). Rainwood learns that to survive in this hell-hole he must stand up and fight - knowledge he carries with him on his eventual parole. With the exception of Abraham's world-weary performance, and a couple of nicely nasty cameos from David Rasche and Richard Young as the crooked cops, this is a disposable affair. Yates' ham-fisted direction cranks the film up into melodramatic hyperbole, but Selleck is the real villan, portraying his transformation from wide-eyed innocent to hardened man of the world by changing from clean-shaven mop top to stubbly slicked-back, with reflecting shades to boot. Laughable.
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