100 mins
7.8 / 10 (957)


Released from solitary confinement, prisoner Joe Collins learns that his wife Ruth is refusing surgery to treat her cancer, unless Joe can be by her side. But while Joe is plotting his escape, an incident causes the prison to go into lockdown mode, overseen by the mean-spirited guard Captain Munsey.

MUBI's take

A film simmering with postwar rage, this lean, mean prison-break noir from director Jules Dassin still hits like a punch to the gut. With a tremendous ensemble cast led by Burt Lancaster, Brute Force defines carceral life as an existential hellscape in one of the best genre films of the late-1940s.

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