Five Alcatraz inmates have found a way to escape the Rock: earn their freedom by becoming human guinea pigs in a risky radiation experiment aimed at treating blood diseases. The experiment is soon scuttled after one of them kills another inmate.
Five Alcatraz inmates have found a way to escape the Rock: earn their freedom by becoming human guinea pigs in a risky radiation experiment aimed at treating blood diseases. The experiment is soon scuttled after one of the subjects goes berserk, killing another inmate. But did the tests really lead to murder? Dr. Ross Williams (John Howard of the Bulldog Drummond films) investigates, finds another possible cause... and finds his life in deadly peril as a result. Busy "poverty row" filmmaker Edward L. Cahn ("Our Gang" shorts, Invasion of the Saucer Men) ties a shoestring budget into a B-movie bow that bundles together elements of mystery, sci-fi, medical-drama and prison pictures. Fans of brisk Bs won't want to let this one get away.
EXPERIMENT ALCATRAZ stars John Howard as a doctor who develops a serum to cure radioactive poisoning. He tests it on several Alcatraz "lifers," who have volunteered for the experiment on the promise of freedom if they survive. A murder within the group casts aspersions on the doctor, but the mystery is solved before the allotted hour's running time is up. While hardly a surefire candidate for box office success, EXPERIMENT ALCATRAZ was purchased for release by RKO for a sum of $100,000. The film had been independently produced a year before its distribution, its lack of production polish betraying its shoestring origins. Coincidentally, leading man John Howard "continued" in the medical profession as the star of the mid-1950s TV series DR. HUDSON'S SECRET JOURNAL.
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