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The Stanford Prison Experiment 2015 explores the science behind the making of a ‘good’ person and the influence of power. Based on the notorious real life events of the 1971 psychological experiment, this gripping film tells of a group of college students who were placed into a simulated jail and randomly assigned roles as prisoners and guards with disastrous results. Scheduled to run over two weeks, the experiment was abandoned after just six days when the students transformed from laid back undergraduates to deadly serious participants in the system. Billy Crudup stars as Stanford University professor Dr. Philip Zimbardo, whose experiment sought to question what motivated people to good and evil, specifically focusing on how abusive behaviour emerges in the prison system.
This film screening has been curated for the World Science Festival Brisbane by QAGOMA’s Australian Cinémathèque.
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