Women in Prison at Eastern State Penitentiary

Have you ever wanted to spend a night in prison? Okay, probably not. But what if you were locked up with Pam Grier?

The Secret Cinema is offering Philadelphia fans of prison films a chance to get the full clink experience, Grier included, on Thursday, September 26, 2013. They’ll be hosting a screening of a 16MM print of exploitation classic The Big Doll House (1971), notable for being the first featured role of the blaxploitation heroine, and also featuring the likes of Sid Haig, Judy Brown, and Pat Woodell. And the screening will take place at Eastern State Penitentiary in a limited seating venue behind steel bars!

The Big Doll House is the story of a sadistic warden who rules the roost at a hellish women’s prison camp, and one cell full of sexy inmates plotting their escape. Shot on the cheap in the Philippines, the film was called a “first-of-its-kind, drive-in classic” by Psychotronic’s Michael Weldon. This plunge into the world of ’70s prison movies includes all of the attendant sleaze, sex, violence and gratuitous mud wrestling scenes you would expect. It was directed by genre favorite Jack Hill, also responsible for Spidery Baby (1964), Coffy (1973), and Foxy Brown (1974).

Eastern State Penitentiary, built in the 1820s, is a world famous historic landmark, which influenced the design of hundreds of other prisons. Closed as a working prison since 1971, the decaying structure, which once housed Al Capone and Willie Sutton, has become a popular tourist attraction and museum over the last two decades. The film will be projected right inside the main prison building in a hallway just outside Capone’s cell, surrounded by iron bars and ghosts of convicts past.

Admission is $10. Doors will open at 7 pm, and the film starts at 8. Tickets for the event can be purchased through Eastern State Penitentiary’s website, or at https://secure.interactiveticketing.com/a/e37b0d?slot_date=2013-09-26

Thursday, September 26, 2013
8:00 pm (doors open at 7:00 pm)
Admission: $10.00

Eastern State Penitentiary
22nd & Fairmount Sts., Philadelphia
(215) 236-3300

Author: Robert Skvarla

Robert is a contributing writer at Cinedelphia who is finishing up his undergrad at Temple University in Strategic Communication. He writes for a number of local publications including City Paper and in the past has failed to maintain a series of rambling blogs related to pop culture. In his free time, he also enjoys strange music, offbeat art, and weird people. Follow him on Twitter @RobertSkvarla.

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