The Best Movies About Women in Prison 

Updated September 30, 2019 556 votes 426 voters 223.8k views 23 items

List Rules Vote for your personal favorite Women in prison films films, regardless of how popular or successful they were at the box office.

A list of all the best women in prison movies ever made. The movies on this list of women in prison films have two things in common: they have scenes taken place in prison and there happen to be women in those prisons. This list contains the best women in prison movies of all time, as voted on by fans of the films This women in prison films movie list can be sorted alphabetically, by director, by year and more, but is currently ordered from best to worst. Make this one count by downvoting the worst movies on this list.

These are the top films that take place primarily in a women's prison. The genre may not be as large as other, but there are still plenty of great movies about women and girls going to jail. While the setting and the characters may be different than typical movies that take place in prison, female prison movies still share many of the same motiffs and themes of the genre in general. 

What's better, Escape from Hell or Women in Cellblock 9? The films on this list cover the most famous female prison movies.  If we missed any movies that feature women how are incarcerated on this list, please add them to the list yourself. 

Whether you're at home and want to watch these women in prison movies on DVD, streaming Blu-ray or streaming, or if you're seeing them in theaters for the first time, this is a list of good women in prison movies that can be helpful in either situation to see where they all stack up. So from the latest, to the greatest women in prison movies, here is the full women in prison movies list, ordered from best to worst.

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An American woman (Pam Grier) is convicted of murder in the Philippines and sentenced to a grim women’s prison in the jungle, where she and the other prisoners rise up against an abusive and sadistic warden. ...more on Wikipedia

Actors: Pam Grier, Sid Haig, Christiane Schmidtmer, Jack Davis, Roberta Collins, + more

Released: 1971

Directed by: Jack Hill

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#8 of 10 The Best R-Rated Women In Prison Movies #4 of 13 The Best R-Rated Filipino Movies

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Women in Cellblock 9 is a 1977 Swiss film directed by Spanish director Jesus Franco, starring Howard Vernon and Karine Gambier. Its main theme is women in prison. Unlike most of Franco's work this remains banned in the United Kingdom due to large amounts of sexual violence, and as one of the lead actresses in many of the sex scenes was 16 at the time the film was made. The film was rejected by the British Board of Film Classification when submitted in 2004 and has since not been successfully appealed. ...more on Wikipedia

Actors: Howard Vernon

Released: 1977

Directed by: Jesús Franco

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Caged Fury is a 1989 women in prison film about a group of prisoners who decide to escape from an all-female prison. The film was directed by Bill Milling, and stars Erik Estrada and James Hong. ...more on Wikipedia

Actors: Janine Lindemulder, Ron Jeremy, Erik Estrada, Jack Carter, James Hong, + more

Released: 1989

Directed by: Bill Milling

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#12 of 35 The Best Exploitation Movies #4 of 10 The Best R-Rated Women In Prison Movies

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This delicious period piece, based on Sarah Waters’ 1999 novel of the same name, is a women-in-prison movie with a gothic Victorian twist. Upper-class Margaret (Anna Madeley), mourning her father’s recent death and looking for diversion, goes to Millbank Prison as a “Lady Visitor” — presumably to improve the female convicts but really as a way to step outside her limited, conventional world. When she finds herself irresistibly drawn to Selina (Zoe Tapper), an attractive young convict, Margaret’s do-gooding quickly falls by the wayside. ...more on Wikipedia

Actors: Anna Massey, Amanda Plummer, Nickolas Grace, Anne Reid, Sarah Crowden, + more

Released: 2008

Directed by: Tim Fywell