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Stanford Prison Experiment

Billy Crudup is Dr. Philip Zimbardo, the social psychologist who was the principal investigator on one of the most well know experiments in psychology, the Stanford Prison experiment. Young, healthy college age men were recruited and randomly assigned to be either prisoners or guards. The film, based on Zimbardo’s book and documents from the experiment, captures faithfully what happened during the 6 days the experiment took place before Zimbardo stopped it. The film recreates the experiment in a very compelling way. The acting overall is very good; Crudup is solid, and the actors playing the young men help convey what it must have felt like to be involved in the experiment. Solid thumbs up for a movie that shows up one of the experiments most profound and enduring findings –behavior is not caused only by personality but also by the social context. The results of the experiment are still timely nearly 45 years after it was conducted. (2015, 4 stars)

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