Caged Heat (1974) – Blu-ray Review

Caged Heat (1974) – Blu-ray Review

caged heat1974.

Directed by Jonathan Demme.
Starring Juanita Brown, Erica Gavin, Roberta Collins, Cheryl Smith, Barbara Steele, Warren Smith.


Inmates at a women’s prison rebel when the prison doctor begins experimenting with electric shock therapy to control their behavior.

It’s often interesting to go back into the career of a big-name director and see where they began, especially when said director was part of B-movie legend Roger Corman’s rich pool of talent in the 1970s, because we often know what kind of of film that will involve.

And while Jonathan Demme may be best known these days as the director behind such Hollywood golds as The silence of the lambs Y Philadelphia, it was with the much-maligned women in prison movie that Demme, following in the footsteps of Jack Hill, who was also under Corman’s tutelage, earned his first directing credit. So looking at 1974 caged heat Now, is it obvious that this was the filmmaker who gave us Anthony Hopkins in his most iconic role a quarter of a century later?

Not really, but don’t be discouraged because caged heat – with all its genre trappings – is a slightly more nuanced experience than more seedy Jack Hill movies like the big doll house Y The big bird cage from a couple of years before. While Hill’s films were more direct action, featuring female prisoners whose clothes seemed to fall off for no real reason other than excitement, Demme, who had previously written the hot box Y Black mom, white momfrom what he had experience within the genre, he takes a lighter approach, knowing that the audience likely to go to the theater to see his movie will expect certain things, but not just want to see the same thing over and over again (because the movie fanatic can be like that sometimes).

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Demme achieves this by adding some healthy doses of humor in between the exploitative violence, which may not seem like much, but it does give the actors a bit of wiggle room when presenting their dialogue, which is less progressive in certain areas but, ultimately, this is a Women in Prison movie from the 1970s, what are you waiting for?

Despite Demme’s injection of humor, caged heat checks all the boxes for what you’d like to see, including totally gratuitous nudity, profanity, shoddy guards, and gory violence, not to mention a goofy plot about women being treated like cattle by a sadistic warden (in this case, a sexually sexually ill governess). repressed, wheelchair-bound McQueen, played by the wonderful Barbara Steele), but the director also plays with a weird dream sequence for the first 15 minutes that feels a bit out of place considering where we’re headed.

However, it at least shows a bit of ambition on Demme’s part, even if Roger Corman would probably stand firm on such matters (which he alludes to in the special interview). But aside from Jonathan Demme’s forays into artistic dream sequences and some light comedy (often set to upbeat musical pieces that wouldn’t sound out of place in a Continue… movie), caged heat it can sit proudly among connoisseurs’ collection of women in prison as one of the high-end films of the genre.

The presence of Barbara Steele adds enormous weight to the production, even if the generic plot of women being catty with each other and then teaming up during an escape doesn’t, and the main plot device about the prison doctor, which well could be interpreted. by Leslie Phillips, since he’s obviously trying to look dapper with his neatly trimmed mustache and his dialogue is mostly innuendo, or just plain wrong (“Listen, I don’t enjoy this ritual any more than you do. Now what he’s going to do now is a little calisthenics…” he says to some new inmates he just asked to undress) – performing electroshock therapy to make prisoners more compliant is treated with all the care and attention such an act deserves, thankfully .

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It is backed up with an archival audio commentary with writer/director Jonathan Demme (who sadly passed away in 2017), cinematographer Tak Fujimoto, and actress Erica Gavin, and a short interview with Roger Corman on how Jonathan Demme came to direct. the movie. caged heat It probably looks as good as ever thanks to a 2K scan which doesn’t do much to improve the gloomy prison environment, but once the prisoners have escaped, exterior scenes look nice and bright, with a lot less grain and more details of what you would do. have not seen in previous versions.

but yes caged heat Whether a movie you want to see is entirely a matter of your own conscience, as the family watching it is not. Given the amount of full frontal female nudity, which happens pretty much every couple of minutes, you’d be wise to pick times to watch it if others around you aren’t as open to your charms, but seeing how you look. a little tidier and a little, just a little, mind, more polished than other movies of this type, I could always use “It’s from the director of The silence of the lambs so I thought I’d check it out” as an excuse if you get caught. It could work…

Flashing Myth Rating – Movie ★ ★ / Movie ★ ★ ★ ★

Chris Ward

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About the Author: Pierre Cohen

A person who has expertise in politics and writes articles to fill his spare time as a hobby.