This hard-hitting, fact-based drama was filmed on location in the actual Synanon House in Santa Monica, California in 1965.   Synanon House was a large ex-addict and ex-con run enterprise and it was famous for it's harsh "tough love" policies and it's high success rate. Synanon was a rehab center for heroin addicts at a time when there were really few avenues of any kind of help for addicts.

The difficulties faced by drug addicts attempting to kick their habits provide the basis of this gritty, realistic drama that drives this multi-layered story of redemption and tragedy. Academy Award winner Edmond O’Brien played Chuck Dederich, a reformed alcoholic who began the facility to help other addicts of all kinds and who coined the famous phrase “today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

Chuck appeared in Synanon as Ben with an outstanding cast that included Alex Cord, Eartha Kitt, Richard Conte, Stella Stevens, Alejandro Rey, Barbara Luna, Bernie Hamilton and some of the actual Synanon residents.