Murder in the First


Time Out says

In Alcatraz on a minor charge, gentle, granite-willed Henri Young (Bacon) ends in hellish solitary confinement for three punishing years that all but break his body yet leave him thirsting for revenge on the duplicitous inmate who put him away. Soon, there's a murder in the mess hall, and Young looks to be going down again for an even longer stretch. Yet when tyro lawyer Stamphill discovers the truth of his client's previous treatment, he decides to plead on the killer's behalf, thus shaking the prison service to the core. Bacon's extraordinary physical commitment powers this heartfelt, occasionally bombastic portrait of institutionalised injustice, compellingly adapted by Dan Gordon from a true story. A hyperactive camera and Chris Young's thunderous score lay on the emphasis. Slater's good as the lawyer and Oldman chilling as the razor-cropped associate warden, but it's Bacon's picture - and if he doesn't win an Oscar, there ain't no justice in the world.

By: TJ


Release details

122 mins

Cast and crew

Marc Rocco
Dan Gordon
Christian Slater
Kevin Bacon
Gary Oldman
Embeth Davidtz
Bill Macy
Stephen Tobolowsky
Brad Dourif
R Lee Ermey
Kyra Sedgwick
Ben Slack
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