Brubaker (1980)

Fact-based drama starring Robert Redford as Henry Brubaker, the new inmate at a run-down Southern prison that's become notorious for corruption and violence. After he witnesses several instances of gross misconduct and defuses a tense… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: June 20, 1980
DVD Release Date: May 20, 2003
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Critic Score: 76% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Gary Arnold
Washington Post

... a vivid, entertaining and shamelessly manipulative "crusading" melodrama about the impact of a reform warden on a barbarous penal institution.

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Emanuel Levy

Inspired by fact, this politically conscious prison drama is well written (script was Oscar nominated), but only decently acted by Redford, who might not have been the right choice.

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Rich Cline
Shadows on the Wall

intense and a bit cliched

Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing

The first half-hour is powerful stuff, but after Brubaker reveals his true identity, the movie begins to falter, with the one-dimensional nature of the characters (particularly the warden himself) eventually stripping the story of any dramatic charge.

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Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It was hard to sit through two hours of such brutality and misery and say you enjoyed it.

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Jamie Gillies
Apollo Guide

Robert Redford, in a surprise acting tour de force, really stretches his style and mannerisms to become Henry Brubaker.

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James Plath
Movie Metropolis

I never felt that I was wasting my time watching 'Brubaker,' only that it could have been a more dramatic and taut prison movie-which is odd, because it's directed by Stuart Rosenberg ('Cool Hand Luke').

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Mark Bourne

Redford is the main attraction, obviously, even though his princely good looks -- like the movie's 'idealistic crusader against the Establishment' earnestness -- are almost too much of a good thing.

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Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

Robert Redford puts in a stellar performance as a zealous prison reformer in this meditation on the ardor of idealism.

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More reviews for Brubaker

Flixster Audience Score: 74% Flixster User Reviews
Red Lats
Brubaker is a prison drama - a little like Shawshank Redemption, but in this one, it is Brubaker that is fighting corruption in prison. It is almost too… More
Byron Brubaker
Good message. Sure, the end is somewhat sappy. Redford as Brubaker plays a good reformer. I've read another review that said this is very similar to… More
Mister Caple
Classic Robert Redford from the early 80's. A gripping movie from the director of "Cool Hand Luke".
Cameron Johnson
Brubaker sounds like something someone would grunt out, or rather, what Robert Redford might grunt out in the shower. Redford might just be playing a warden… More
Lady D'arbanville
Based on the real life story of Tom Murton, this sure is a worthy tale to tell, however I found the whole film pretty boring and I have to say Robert Redford… More
Jeffrey Meyers
It's no Cool Hand Luke (Rosenberg's earlier film), but Brubaker is still a great prison drama. Depressing as it may be, it's a fact-based story,… More