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Blu-ray Review - Penitentiary

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Instead of taking the usual exploitation route, writer/director Jamaa Fanaka attempts something slightly different with 1979's "Penitentiary," using his screen time to orchestrate sporting and tough guy excitement and approach some interesting social and judicial problems, helping the feature achieve a bit more dramatic texture than the average slug-fest. "Penitentiary" has many issues with tone, taste, and fight choreography, but it's also commanding when it needs to be, with Fanaka conjuring interesting characters and a vividly hostile setting, getting the boxing picture all worked up when necessary to keep viewers interested in the fates of hard men locked inside a concrete cage. Read the rest at Blu-ray.com 

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