The Best Prison Movies Films
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The Best Prison Movies

List Criteria: Films set in prison or jails or that star prisoners or convicts.

Best prison movies is a list of the top jail films of all time. These are movies that take place within or around a penitentiary. This prison movies list also includes escape movies, as the plot sometimes revolves around a convict's escape attempt.

Jails create an interesting setting for filmmakers. Since prisons are self-encapsulated, prisons tend to form their own societies with their own rules, hierarchies, and etiquette. As such, the prisons become a veritable island for the prisoners inside.

The prison films on this list are some of the best, so there is bound to be at least one on here that you will enjoy. Make sure to vote for what you think is the greatest prison film ever and add your favorite movie set in jail if it's not on the prison movies list.

  • 20 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 800
    - 76

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Morgan Freeman, Rita Hayworth, Tim Robbins Released: 1994

    ) open buy @ amazon
  2. 2
    + 592
    - 113


    Tom Hanks, Sam Rockwell, Michael Clarke Duncan Released: 1999

    ) open buy @ amazon
  3. 3
    + 281
    - 86


    Paul Newman, Dennis Hopper, George Kennedy Released: 1967

    ) open buy @ amazon
  4. 4
    + 217
    - 81


    Released: 1973

    ) open buy @ amazon
  5. 5
    + 212
    - 68

    added by mrblond
    Steve McQueen, James Coburn, Charles Bronson

    ) open buy @ amazon
  6. 6
    + 287
    - 61


    Clint Eastwood, Danny Glover, Patrick McGoohan Released: 1979

    ) open buy @ amazon
  7. 7
    + 298
    - 50

    ranked low on reranks
    Edward Furlong, Edward Norton, Beverly D'Angelo

    ) open buy @ amazon
  8. 8
    + 215
    - 81


    John Hurt, Randy Quaid, Brad Davis Released: 1978

    ) open buy @ amazon
  9. 9
    + 225
    - 82

    added by Lons
    Burt Reynolds, Bernadette Peters, Ray Nitschke

    ) open buy @ amazon
  10. 10
    + 166
    - 63


    George Clooney, John Goodman, Holly Hunter

    ) open buy @ amazon
  11. 11
    + 109
    - 58

    added by ryanmcw
    Burt Lancaster, Karl Malden, Telly Savalas

    ) open buy @ amazon
  12. 12
    + 108
    - 60

    added by KimBrownsey
    Robert Redford, Mark Ruffalo, Robin Wright

    ) open buy @ amazon
  13. 13
    + 180
    - 40

    ranked low on reranks & added by wiabux
    Gerard Butler, Jamie Foxx, Viola Davis

    ) open buy @ amazon
  14. 14
    + 145
    - 65


    Sean Penn, Susan Sarandon, Jack Black Released: 1995

    ) open buy @ amazon
  15. 15
    + 118
    - 52

    added by oldguy07
    Edward James Olmos, William Forsythe, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

    ) open buy @ amazon
  16. 16
    + 86
    - 56


    Nicolas Cage, Morgan Freeman, Robert Redford Released: 1980

    ) open buy @ amazon
  17. 17
    + 95
    - 47

    added by GS69
    Brad Pitt, Robert De Niro, Dustin Hoffman

    ) open buy @ amazon
  18. 18
    + 71
    - 41

    added by bojanthebest
    William Holden, Peter Graves, Otto Preminger

    ) open buy @ amazon
  19. 19
    + 100
    - 60

    added by Lons
    Denzel Washington, Liev Schreiber, Rod Steiger

    ) open buy @ amazon
  20. 20
    + 51
    - 55

    often listed & added by PeteBoyle
    Michael Fassbender, Liam Cunningham, Stuart Graham Released: 2008

    ) open buy @ amazon
  21. 21
    + 236
    - 64

    ranked low on reranks
    Nicolas Cage, Steve Buscemi, John Malkovich

    ) open buy @ amazon
  22. 22
    + 68
    - 53

    often listed & added by erwan
    Tahar Rahim, Leïla Bekhti, Niels Arestrup

    ) open buy @ amazon
  23. 23
    + 132
    - 80


    Adam Sandler, Courteney Cox, Chris Rock Released: 2005

    ) open buy @ amazon
  24. 24
    + 154
    - 64

    ranked low on reranks
    Sean Penn, Ally Sheedy, Clancy Brown Released: 1983

    ) open buy @ amazon
  25. 25
    + 52
    - 37


    Daniel Day-Lewis, Emma Thompson, Tom Wilkinson

    ) open buy @ amazon
  26. 26
    + 73
    - 52


    Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder, Craig T. Nelson Released: 1980

    ) open buy @ amazon
  27. 27
    + 82
    - 64

    added by PeteBoyle
    Jason Statham, Tyrese Gibson, Natalie Martinez Released: 2008

    ) open buy @ amazon
  28. 28
    + 99
    - 46

    ranked low on reranks
    Val Kilmer, Stephen Dorff, Marisol Nichols Released: 2008

    ) open buy @ amazon
  29. 29
    + 52
    - 56

    added by azzy_roth
    Elvis Presley, Dean Jones, Gloria Pall

    ) open buy @ amazon
  30. 30
    + 72
    - 55


    Eddie Murphy, Poppy Montgomery, Martin Lawrence Released: 1999

    ) open buy @ amazon
  31. 31
    + 57
    - 22

    added by BushWanker
    Jamie Lee Curtis, Kurt Russell, Ernest Borgnine

    ) open buy @ amazon
  32. 32
    + 60
    - 46


    Wesley Snipes, Master P, Ving Rhames Released: 2002

    ) open buy @ amazon
  33. 33
    + 32
    - 38


    Mickey Rourke, Edward Furlong, Willem Dafoe Released: 2000

    ) open buy @ amazon
  34. 34
    + 33
    - 29


    Sidney Poitier, Tony Curtis, Carl Switzer

    ) open buy @ amazon
  35. 35
    + 61
    - 48

    added by PeteBoyle
    Tom Hardy, Hugh Ross, Amanda Burton Released: 2009

    ) open buy @ amazon
  36. 36
    + 35
    - 40

    added by srjthnk
    Luis Tosar, Antonio Resines, Alberto Ammann

    ) open buy @ amazon
  37. 37
    + 40
    - 40

    added by AdrianDanga
    Jon Voight, Rebecca De Mornay, Eric Roberts

    ) open buy @ amazon
  38. 38
    + 40
    - 47


    Mel Gibson, Peter Stormare, Dean Norris

    ) open buy @ amazon
  39. 39
    + 31
    - 45

    added by wiabux
    Michael Jai White, Scott Adkins, Ben Cross Released: 2005

    ) open buy @ amazon
  40. 40
    + 54
    - 40


    Gary Oldman, Kevin Bacon, Christian Slater Released: 1994

    ) open buy @ amazon
  41. 41
    + 30
    - 3

    ranked low on reranks
    Nicolas Cage, Sean Connery, Jim Caviezel

    ) open buy @ amazon
  42. 42
    + 24
    - 28


    Ray Winstone, Phil Daniels, David Threlfall

    ) open buy @ amazon
  43. 43
    + 43
    - 51


    Kate Beckinsale, Claire Danes, Paul Walker Released: 1999

    ) open buy @ amazon
  44. 44
    + 29
    - 46


    Paul Muni, Glenda Farrell, Preston Foster Released: 1932

    ) open buy @ amazon
  45. 45
    + 3
    - 6

    added by ZiZou
    François Leterrier, Jacques Ertaud, Maurice Beerblock

    ) open buy @ amazon
  46. 46
    + 15
    - 36


    Kirk Douglas, Henry Fonda, Burgess Meredith Released: 1970

    ) open buy @ amazon
  47. 47
    + 28
    - 35


    William Hurt, Raúl Juliá, Sônia Braga Released: 1985

    ) open buy @ amazon
  48. 48
    + 2
    - 5


    Susan Hayward, Theodore Bikel, Simon Oakland

    ) open buy @ amazon
  49. 49
    + 11
    - 19

    added by PeteBoyle
    Erich von Stroheim, Jean Gabin, Marcel Dalio

    ) open buy @ amazon
  50. 50
    + 41
    - 18


    Shia LaBeouf, Sigourney Weaver, Jon Voight Released: 2003

    ) open buy @ amazon
65 +

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