Jail Bait (1954) - Rotten Tomatoes

Jail Bait (1954)

Jail Bait (1954)

Jail Bait




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Jail Bait Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Jail Bait was the place where Edward D. Wood Jr.'s career as a director entered the mainstream. Having exposed the world of transvestism in Glen or Glenda, he now turned to less ambitious fare in an effort at commercial success. Loosely patterned after the television series Dragnet, Jail Bait tells the story of Don Gregor (Clancey Malone), the spoiled, arrogant son of a successful plastic surgeon (Herbert Rawlinson), who is out for some kicks and excitement and hooks up with Vic Brady (Timothy Farrell), a career criminal. Opening with Don's arrest for illegal possession of a pistol, the film tracks his interaction with a pair of detectives (Lyle Talbot, Steve Reeves); his deceiving of his sister (Dolores Fuller) and his father; the robbery that goes wrong and leads him to murder an ex-cop; and his attempt to go straight, which gets him killed. That action, and Brady's attempt to force Dr. Gregor to alter his face, leads to a bizarre revenge that makes up the final 15 minutes of the movie. Little of this plot is unfolded skillfully -- Wood was already out of his depth in directing actors -- but having access to Howco's finances (meager as they were) and facilities gives Jail Bait a slightly smoother, less emaciated look than most of Wood's later movies. Coupled with the fact that he was trying to do a straight crime film, and the resulting restraint he showed in the writing, Jail Bait can just about "pass" as a normal, albeit very low-budget film, although, as with all of Wood's movies, there is still an unintended laugh every minute or so. And just to show how close to the edge Wood was working even at the outset of his career, in terms of using marginal talent, neophyte performers, and one-time successful actors, Bela Lugosi was not the first leading actor in a Wood movie to die during production -- that distinction went to Herbert Rawlinson, who played Dr. Gregor here. The former silent-era leading man reportedly died the night after he finished shooting his role in Jail Bait.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Edward D. Wood Jr., Alex Gordon
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 14, 2000
Howco International

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Dolores Fuller
as Marilyn Gregor
Lyle Talbot
as Inspector Johns
Herbert Rawlinson
as Doctor Gregor
Steve Reeves
as Lieutentant Bob Lawr...
Timothy Farrell
as Vic Brady
Bud Osborne
as Night Watchman
Mona McKinnon
as Miss Willis
John Avery
as Police Doctor
John Avery
as Police Doctor
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Jail Bait

Critic Reviews for Jail Bait

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (1)

The tale of a bad seed immersed in that most horrific of crimes, unregistered gun ownership.

Full Review… | August 19, 2003
AV Club
Top Critic

Typical bad Ed Wood production, which is typically great to many.

September 13, 2005

Better than some Wood films, but somehow less fun.

October 22, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

This is Wood's attempt to be taken seriously, and he makes this the best film he has ever made.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

August 14, 2005

March 2, 2005
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Audience Reviews for Jail Bait

This isn't a well known movie of Ed Wood's, but I thought it was very good, especially the story. It's exciting and dramatic, but of course low budget and sort of cheesy, which I kinda liked. Anyway, if you like Wood's movies you should see this one too.

Aj V

Super Reviewer


A sorry attempt at film noir, but since it's Ed Wood it's worth seeing.

Michael Gildea

Super Reviewer

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