Blu-ray Review: Womens Prison Massacre

When Sylvia Kristel hit cinema gold in Emmanuelle (1974), the Italian exploitation market was eager to fill the screens with more erotic adventures. Black Emanuelle came out in 1975 for an audience that thought the marquee had merely lost an “M” in the wind. Instead of Kristel, viewers were treated to the arrival of Laura Gemser. The exotic actress was born in Indonesia and raised in Holland. Thus she looked at ease being an investigative reporter that jetted around the world on the trail of hot stories. She made nearly a dozen movies as the character wrapping it up with Womens Prison Massacre also released as Emanuelle Escapes from Hell. The movie is finally getting released on Blu-ray

Emanuelle is behind bars having been framed by a district attorney who didn’t want her to expose the truth. This isn’t the usual women behind bars epic. Things start out with a piece of experimental theater. The arty show gets stopped when Albina (Ursula Flores) gets into the act. Albina is mean and has the female warden’s ear. When two female prisoners get a bit too frisky while washing up, they get a fierce dunking from the female guards. Emanuelle attempts to complain to the warden about the cruel punishment only to find herself also getting the feisty nature drowned out of her. While the movie seemed destined to be a face off between Emanuelle and authority, the script changes gears. Male death row inmates get detoured to the womens prison while be transported. The warden and her female staff aren’t ready for this manly evil. They men revolt and take hostages. This leads to a lot of bad life choices including forcing Emanuelle and Albina to play Russian Roulette. Making matters worst is the person in charge of rescung the prison is the attorney general who wants Emanuelle dead. Who will survive this night?

The film is a semi-follow up to Violence in a Women’s Prison. Both films were directed by Bruno Mattei using the same prison location and sets. Why not make a quick second film for a movie market eager to enjoy more Gemser. Womens Prison Massacre is a fond farewell to the woman who couldn’t back down from a good story and barely stayed dressed.

The video is 1.78:1 anamorphic. The transfer brings out the sleek beauty of Gemser in rough landscapes. The audio is DTS-HD Master Audio Mono. The dialogue is all dubbed so don’t pay too much attention to their lips. The movie is subtitled.

No bonus features.

Womens Prison Massacre is a goodbye to Emanuelle. This appears to be the proper edit of the film after decades of butchered cuts coming out on home video. The arty nature of the film only adds a strange dimension to a film meant for the local grindhouses around the globe.

Scream Factory presents Womens Prison Massacre. Directed by: Bruno Mattei. Screenplay by: Claudio Fragasso & Olivier Lefait. Starring: Laura Gemser, Gabriele Tinti, Carlo De Mejo, Lorraine De Selle, and Franca Stoppi. Rated: R. Running Time: 89 minutes. Released: December 8, 2015.

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