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Alcatraz or The Rock was supposed to be escape proof.  But Frank and his friends seek to prove that wrong. Clint Eastwood starts in this iconic film that is part two of the Prison Breaks triple.  Join Cory and John as they chip away at the bars and row this podcast across the bay for Escape from Alcatraz.

Escape from Alcatraz:

Frank Morris (Clint Eastwood) is a bank robber sentenced to Alcatraz after breaking out of other prisons. As soon as he arrives, he gets the lay of the land from Litmus (Frank Ronzio), English (Paul Benjamin), and Doc (Roberts Blossom).  People try various ways to escape but get caught or killed.  He has a talk with the Warden (Patrick McGoohan) who reinforces this idea. He says inmates are there to do their time and have no say in anything.

Frank has a superior I.Q. and does not let any of these things deter him.  Charlie Butts (Larry Hankin) arrives and Frank helps him settle in.  Then the Anglin brothers, John (Fred Ward) and Clarence (Jack Thibeau), show up they know Frank and are good at breaking out of prisons. Frank had to fight off another inmate, Wolf, and is pushed to the limit after being locked up in the hole.  Doc is a painter and his work helps him stay sane.  But he did a painting of the Warden and the Warden saw it.  He was banned from painting. He chops the fingers of one hand off in the shop.  This pushes the guys to action.  They begin work on the break out.  Each man has their part to play.

Frank plans and researches and the others get supplies. They dig out the wall vents and then make a cover using cardboard. They sculpt fake heads with real hair.  They make a drill to drill out the roof vent cover. They get rain coats to make a raft and supply holders. Litmus dies of a heart attack after the Warden upsets him. There are several close calls with the guards and Wolf. The time has come to break out.

Frank, John & Clarence get into the crawl space but Charlie lingers in his cell.  By the time he gets to the roof vent the other three have already left and he is stranded.  The three dodge the lights and guards and make it to the bay and paddle off.  The guards come to move Frank in the morning but he is gone.  A huge manhunt occurs but the men are never found. Some photos and a flower are found on Angel Island but never the men. The Warden assumes they drowned but no one knows for sure.

Summary:

I confess this was my first time watching this film. But it was a exciting ride! I know this was based on a true story and that makes it even more intriguing.  I’ve watched a lot of shows on Alcatraz and it’s history. Looking at this movie, it is easy to see where later movies drew on it for inspiration. The cast was small and tight and the story was told well.  This movie is well worth a watch.

Add It To Your Library:

Get the movie from Amazon

Music:

The score was done by Jerry Fielding. Here is the Main Theme from the movie.

Buy the score here.

Name That Movie:

The clue this week was:  Outbreak also stared Dustin Hoffman. Dustin also appeared in this Neo Noir film with Guy Pearce
Which lead us to the following movie:  The movie is  “L.A. Confidential”

Support:

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