Mar 21, 2021

Women's Reformatory (1986)


I'm not sure if we'll ever reach the bottom of the WIP genre. We've certainly covered a ton, but there are many more to go. Argentina didn't put out many WIP flicks, so this is one is special.

Four girls are arrested for different criminal acts in different parts of the city. Alicia Gracelli (Mercedes Alonso), is arrested for for robbing a pharmacy, 

Elizabeth Rivas (Silvia Peyrou) is arrested for stripping at a club.

Martha Rigal (Vicky Olivares) is arrested for drug trafficking

Laura Regueira (Edda Bustamante) is having sex with her boyfriend (Adrián Martel)

She goes to take a shower.

While she's in the bathroom, Raúl (Tony Vilas) kills her boyfriend.

She finds him dead and stupidly handles the weapon.  She's charged with his murder.

The girls are taken to prison.  Upon arrival, they're stripped. (Laura on the left)

Elizabeth is routinely locked up, so she has no fear.  She actually seems to like it.

Elizabeth is first to the showers.

Alicia and Laura on the left.

Dolores (Thelma Stefani) is the queen bitch around here.

Laura makes friends with Lucila Expósita (Mónica Villa) who was arrested for stealing to pay for an abortion.

Chief Warden (Ana María Caso) gives Alicia weed and promises to help her out if she cooperates, if you know what I mean, and I think you do.

Ernesto (Carlos Mena) is the prison deputy director.

Dolores has a thing going with Ernesto.

Martha gets a hole of some primo weed.

Then she hangs herself.


Elizabeth takes the clothes of one of the guards and escapes.

The prison believed Martha's death was not suicide, so they brought in the court clerk  (Rodolfo Machado).  He's held at knife-point.  However, the guards eventually take control of the situation.

The girls are transferred to a higher security prison, but along the way, their transport van is blown up and they are swept to the strip club where Elizabeth works.

A policeman (Rubén Bermúdez) helps Laura and asks her to cooperate with the police.  However, she feels she's been wronged by the cops and refuses to work with him.

Elizabeth, decked out in her best spandex, greets their arrival.

Laura is taken in the prostitution network.  Look who one of the traffickers is - Raúl, the dude who killed her boyfriend.

She's forced to have sex with Raúl; the whole time tempted to grab his gun and kill him. But she doesn't.

Raúl bathes Laura.

She can see his damn gun just a few feet away.  Yet she can't bring herself to do it.

The prison erupts into violence.  Dolores is grabbed and carried to the bathroom.

She's killed by drowing in a toilet.  This is especially sad because this is the very last shot of Thelma Stefani who committed suicide a few months after this film's release by jumping from the balcony of her apartment.

The court clerk confesses everything to the police.  He goes home and kills his sick wife then himself.

Elizabeth, Alicia, Laura and Lucila shield themselves from the explosions. The end credits tell us what happens to each one. They were all released except Elizabeth who had to serve six months. THE END

Opinions are divided on this WIP flick.  On the one hand, it's fairly well executed and definitely isn't "stupid" like so many others in the genre.  However, I was bored off my ass.  Too many characters to keep track of, a million different sub-plot threads, alarmingly little sleaze, and a complete and total lack of humor. 

11/27/21 - I've since come upon a HD version of this film. Much better looking, and watching a restored improved the experience a bit - so upping the review a little.


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