Jackson County Jail (1976)

Rating: C

Dir: Michael Miller
Star: Yvette Mimieux, Tommy Lee Jones, Lisa Copeland, Cliff Emmich

Starring Mimieux and produced by Roger Corman, this sounds like it should be another one of his women-in-prison flicks, but it’s far more gritty and down-to-earth, with surprisingly little exploitation. It does have the classic “foreigness”, with LA executive Mimieus ending up in jail, deep in redneck country – see Brokedown Palace for a recent “nice girls in bad territory” film. She kills the guard who rapes her and flees, alongside a debuting young actor called Tommy Lee Jones…ironic to see him on the other side of The Fugitive line.

Brutal when necessary, the film’s focus shifts from Mimieux to Jones, and doesn’t take the viewer with it. On the other hand, it has largely stood the test of time well (a few dodgy haircuts aside), which may explain why Corman is touting the idea of a remake. Don’t know who’d be involved in that: Michael Miller did helm a TV remake of the film in the late 70’s, but he’s now off doing Danielle Steele mini-series, so I guess he won’t be directing, Nor, I presume, will Tommy Lee Jones be appearing!