Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Behind the High Wall is a remake of the 1937 Jackie Cooper-Victor McLaglen film The Big Guy. Tom Tully plays prison warden Frank Carmichael, who is kidnapped during a jail break in which a policeman is killed. In an ensuing car crash, all the escapees are killed except young Johnny Hutchins (John Gavin). Though he knows that Hutchins had nothing to do with the cop's murder, Carmichael refuses to intervene when Johnny is condemned to death. It seems that the escaping convicts had been carrying $100,000 in stolen money with them, which Carmichael has hidden away for his own use. By eliminating Hutchins, the warden is also getting rid of the only potential witness to his own perfidy. Sylvia Sidney is pure venom as Carmichael's crippled, greedy wife, while Betty Lynn (who later played Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show) also registers well as Johnny's agonizing fiancee.
atrocity, captive, captor, convict, death, death-penalty, escape, Europe, kidnapping, loot, officer, performer, plans, police, prison, rock-music, tourist, truck, warden