Civil Brand might think that it carries an inspiring message about courage, hope, and sacrifice, but it's really nothing more than pieces of other movie's messages pasted together. Civil Brand wants to be The Shawshank Redemption, Last Dance, and The Green Mile, but instead comes off as made-for-TV fare, which is no surprise given the fact that director Neema Barnette has helmed nothing but. To call it preachy would be an understatement; the film wants to be a rowdy, boisterous bible-thumping preacher from the south -- and it has the energy and conviction to be one -- but it forgets to bring an original sermon to the altar.
As Frances Shepard (LisaRaye) enters Whitehead Correctional Institute -- a maximum-security prison for women -- she does not fit in with her fellow inmates, who are hardened criminals, drug-addicts, and murderers. She was a young mother and nurse, but after accidentally killing her abusive husband, she was convicted of murder. Fellow prisoner Little Momma (Lark Voorhies) -- 17 years old and pregnant, and also the prison's resident preacher -- quickly befriends and informs her that she's just joined the most lucrative businesses in the country: the prison industrial complex.
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