Penitentiary

Part of the Canada Carries On series, this short documentary reports on the conditions in a Canadian penitentiary, focusing on the treatments developed to reduce the amount of recidivism. Prisoners spend the majority of their days in cells, but they also work—in quarry gangs, on farms, and as tailors and shoe-repairmen. Monthly visitors are allowed, but movements within the prison are tightly controlled. This film is a revealing portrait of the criminal justice system and its philosophies on recidivism in the middle of the 20th century.

Comments

  • sixam

    “I presume a lot of contemporary Canadian criminologists (like the ones I encountered in university) would naively judge the regime depicted in the film as "too harsh".” — sixam, 25 Jun 2014

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Film Credits

director
Ronald Weyman
script
Ronald Weyman
producer
Sydney Newman
photography
Lorne C. Batchelor
music
Eldon Rathburn

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