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The Stanford Prison Experiment

HD   R Closed Captioning

Kyle Patrick Alvarez

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About the Movie

What happens when a college psych study goes shockingly wrong? In this tense, psychological thriller based on the notorious true story, Billy Crudup stars as Stanford University professor Dr. Philip Zimbardo, who, in 1971, cast 24 student volunteers as prisoners and guards in a simulated jail to examine the source of abusive behavior in the prison system. The results astonished the world, as participants went from middle-class undergrads to drunk-with-power sadists and submissive victims in just a few days. Winner of two awards at the Sundance Film Festival, including Best Screenplay, and created with the close participation of Dr. Zimbardo himself, 'The Stanford Prison Experiment' is a chilling, edge-of-your-seat thriller about the dark side of power and the effects of imprisonment. Featuring an extraordinary cast of rising young actors, including Ezra Miller, Olivia Thirlby, Tye Sheridan, Keir Gilchrist, Michael Angarano, and Thomas Mann.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 91
  • Fresh: 76
  • Rotten: 15
  • Average Rating: 7.0/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Fortunately, terrific performances from Ezra Miller as "Prisoner 8612" and Michael Angarano as an overlord keep you from hoping for an early release. – Devan Coggan, Entertainment Weekly, Jul 21, 2015

Fresh: Alvarez captures the sickly green and dingy gray environment, and even though he emphasizes the claustrophobic nature of the stuffy hallway, brings movement and dynamism to the space. – Katie Walsh, Los Angeles Times, Jul 16, 2015

Fresh: Alvarez captures an emotional immediacy and risk that is deliberately excluded from academic debate. – Andrew O'Hehir,, Jul 17, 2015

Rotten: The film runs out of steam by about the half way mark, where matters of unequivocally passed through the gates of Hell. – David Jenkins, Little White Lies, Jun 10, 2016

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews


I had learned of this experiment while in college and was excited to hear there was a movie being made. I had to wait 2 and half years for it. I saw the screening with the director and actors and I have to say this movie was wonderfully done. Ezra miller is going to be around for a long time if he makes the choice to be. You really feel as if you are there suffering with these kids.

Do not watch this movie!

It is horrendous that this was even made. It’s so wrong on so many levels. How dare they… This movie made me so mad and furious just watching it. Never in my life have I EVER hated what a filmmaker has done, what a studio has done. Despicable film. Gives all of production involved a bad name. They don’t deserve your money for this, sincerely they should be charged with a crime. Literally I believe laws were broken making this movie.

Worth a watch.

One of the most fascinating and disturbing social experiments ever conducted gets a so-so movie treatment. If you're unaware of the experiment, watch the movie first then read about it online. Great acting and tension but overall the film falls flat...not particularly exciting and just dull.

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The Stanford Prison Experiment
View in iTunes
  • $12.99
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Released: 2015

Customer Ratings