The Experiment

Volunteers arrive for a psychological study led by Dr. Archaleta (Stevens) in which participants will be divided into groups acting as prison guards and inmates. Among them is Travis (Brody), a proud anti-war protestor, and Michael Barris (Whitaker), a 42-year-old man who still lives with his domineering mother. After interviews measuring responses to various scenes of violence are conducted, a chosen 26 are driven to an isolated building set up as a prison and split into 6 guards and 20 prisoners. Travis is assigned to be a prisoner, Barris as a guard. Basic rules are outlined: prisoners must eat, and fully consume, 3 meals a day; there will be 30 minutes of rec daily; prisoners must remain within designated areas. The guards in turn must ensure prisoners obey the rules, and deal with transgressions commensurately within 30-minutes. Archaleta stresses that the experiment will end immediately at the first sign of violence or quitting. If they manage to follow the rules for two weeks, each man will be paid $14,000. Read more on Wikipedia.