Escape Plan (2013)

Escape Plan (2013)
  • Time: 116 min
  • Genre: Action | Mystery | Thriller
  • Director: Mikael Håfström
  • Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, James Caviezel, Vinnie Jones, 50 Cent, Vincent D’Onofrio


Ray Breslin is the world’s foremost authority on structural security. After analyzing every high security prison and learning a vast array of survival skills so he can design escape-proof prisons, his skills are put to the test. He’s framed and incarcerated in a master prison he designed himself. He needs to escape and find the person who put him behind bars.


  • Since the success of “The Expendables” (The Expendables), Silvester Stallone established a base of which has been quite comfortable: the revival of nostalgia for fans of 80’s films. This are giving enough money to not risk other ventures that could sink the new reputation miraculously got in the XXI century (see eg Steven Seagal not has the same fate). The sequel ” The Expendables 2” and titles such is “Bullet To The Head” were not looking at its cutting edge approach to foreign territories or advancement. “Escape Plan” is a minimum redoubt of that business, teaming up again to Arnold Schwarzenegger and, surprisingly for the standards, covers a territory outside the latest projects, but nominally, as there is no sign of leaving the safety zone and risk

    From ” 21 Jump Street” sitcom completely out of date but with a (very good) film remake finalized in 2012, to Lady Gaga, all add up to the crest of the 80s in this millennium. ” Escape Plan” is not so much “The Expendables ” but works from a different perspective. Although it is a commercial film, it is in the measure of popularity, with Stallone and Schwarzenegger main striking objects. But in terms of trade, it works less artifactual-level way, because it lacks the three essential elements of which depends on the box office of the previous productions of / with Stallone: action, muscles and very self-referential comedy. Here everything is handled as a thriller with occasional humorous reference steps usually launched by the ex terminator (which surprisingly looks younger without showing physical and letting a little beard)

    This does not necessarily mean this movie can not work as a transport to 30 previous years: macho man concepts, ethics, political quotes accidental and the mere presence of the two protagonists are enough to build a few steps from the days of the Reagan administration. But even if is a 80 surface tape moved to 2013, is perceived more sophisticated and with a sense of seriousness and self-importance than “Expendables” , as if it had ” yuppiefied “. Now there are detailed explanations about security methods and possibilities of escape in a cell with a laborious feeling, and Stallone ‘s previous life was much more bureaucratic and professional than “Houdini” skills

    But “Escape Plan” isn’t better than “Expendables” because it has a flat director. As the script is terrible, and releasing a few jokes that are mostly ridiculous. In some situation, we laughed genuinely with the bad dialogues, eg when Stallone gives a hit to Arnold and he says “You hit like a vegan “, but unfortunately not all the jokes are so unintentionally funny as the one described. There are many horrible moments, probably drafted seriously but you take them as a joke: for example when the Muslim demands with great conviction (in exchange for information) a copy of the Koran and outdoors to can “look God in heaven”, or when the doctor grabs a sudden attack of guilt and decides to atone by reading the manual of ethics. Others were written with middle-eye on the fun, but not cause impact: for example Arnold starts to convulse, curses and recites a talk in foreign language (Russian maybe) while his partner fail to find the way out ; Schwarzenegger is not as good actor to make the scene super-delusional

    Beyond those misfires, “Escape Plan” is directed by Mikael Hafstrom, a man that does not correct the time: there are occasions where lots of information is quickly delivered and others where nothing happens, eg in the last five minutes the problem is solved, dual identities and the traitor are solved; while other times such things as sextant and their construction and operation are slow: trivially helps to escape, so the interest is minimal and therefore, this disadvantage should be rushed or injected adrenalin. There are even “repeated” moments that should have been addressed less repetitive (the countless visits to the isolation cells or doctor)

    For a film sealed in places and characters (no dynamism of open spaces) , “Escape Plan” seldom escapes into banal daily routines (“Escape from Alcatraz” did) or enters in the melodrama, but is outlined in the drama starring Silvester lines (pretty bad, because ultimately Stallone ‘s current work seems too exaggerated decision regarding the motivating cause, plus the fact that a man for magically overnight becomes a genius of leaks). However the director not gives space development , lacks proper weight

    After, actors : none of the characters are deepened . Does not take much genius to know: if you think the actors James Caviezel and Vinnie Jones in this film are the great villains that inspire fear… well. Jones nor there, and Caviezel is generally anonymous

    Some bonus details that have no importance but harm: that being the most secure prison in the world the protagonist have been able to escape so easily in the same way it did in others prisons; that Schwarzenegger is an excellent assistant in a universe that is believed hyper-secure; that after several visits of Stallone to the doctor nobody suspects too…

    Scenes that are supposed iconic as Schwarzenegger in the helicopter (with a shot-detail in his eyes) are very late (when boredom is fierce). The strict and pretentious scholarship critical devastated “Escape Plan”, but there were many “journalists” crazed by action movie of the 80’s that rating top marks to the film (no kidding!). Neither viewpoints are healthy for our criteria if are exacerbated by bigotry, but “Escape Plan ” is mediocre. It’s a logical product of the wave of “Expendables” but less lucid… so ultimately it’s a film that stretches too the echoes of a successful saga, when “The Expendables” 1 & 2 qualify pitifully three out of five stars

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  • My expectations for “Escape Plan” weren’t that high, so I could not be disappointed… Both Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger were legends 20 years ago, but these days things are a little bit different… Their acting in ‘The Expendables’ didn’t gave me much hope for the quality of this movie… But I was wrong! The chemistry between Stallone and Schwarzenegger was excellent and believable. The directing was good, the plot was phenomenal, and the prison itself was very impressive. The visuals and environment played a big part throughout the film and only enhanced it. The jokes were subtle but good as well. Overall, this one was an entertaining movie and I actually liked it!

  • If you’ve been reading my reviews, you’ve might have noticed that I’m somewhat of an Arnold Schwarzenegger fan. However, I was never big on his Escape Plan co-star and buddy, Sylvester Stallone. When I heard of their collaboration in Escape Plan (they’ve been planning a collaboration since the 1980s), I was somewhere in between of wanting to and not wanting to watch it. Nonetheless, the concept of the movie seemed interesting enough for me to actually go see it after all. I didn’t expect much from it, but in the end I was pleasantly surprised and thoroughly entertained.

    Ray Breslin (Sylvester Stallone) is a professional escape artist – he escapes from prisons for money, in order to test their security. One day he gets an offer from the CIA to break from the world’s most secured, illegal, off the books prison that holds some of the most dangerous prisoners in the world. He accepts the offer but is betrayed – he finds out this is not a job but someone payed to have him kept in there forever. Upon entering prison he meets Rottmayer (Arnold Schwarzenegger) whom he befriends and with whom he tries to break free.

    Escape Plan is a rather entertaining movie. A stupid, silly, confusingly acted, overblown movie – but still an entertaining movie. While the concept of escaping from an inescapable prison is always interesting, Stallone and Schwarzenegger take it to a new level. Escape Plan, in spite of looking serious from time to time, is still a generic action movie that doesn’t take itself seriously and has a lot of self-deprecating humor (including one scene in which Arnold yells gibberish and prays in German). All the bad things in this movie have a certain trashy/it’s-so-bad-it’s-good quality. Especially the villains in the movie, who are fun and over the top – Jim Caviezel, whose character looks like he came out of a comic book, is great as the butterfly-collecting (the man collects butterflies!), possibly homosexual, ruthless warden Hobbes, and Vinnie Jones is exaggerated as always as the guard Drake. The two leads – Schwarzenegger and Stallone – are on auto-pilot mode throughout the movie, just doing what they mastered through the years, and what they are loved for – being bad asses. The only one that stands out in the movie for being just terrible is Curtis Jackson, aka 50 cent. I don’t know why he’s in the movie but one thing is for sure – he’s unwatchably terrible, in a bad way.

    Actually, I don’t know why 50 cent’s character, Hush, was even in the movie, nor do I see the importance of Amy Ryan’s character Abigail. These two weren’t crucial to the plot, and it would have been much better if the majority of their screen time was cut out so the plot doesn’t wander off from the prison setting. This could have improved the movie’s pace and mystery even more. Speaking of prisons, while I do think that the scenes inside the prisons were decent, I don’t think that Escape Plan exploited the potential of a setting inside an unbreakable prison enough. In the end, the whole prison setting seemed – in lack of a better word – not particularly developed (the nature of the prison, the inmates, the guards, etc.). All in all, like I said before, Escape Plan is a silly, fun, dumb, cheesy popcorn flick that, what it lacks in intelligence, it makes up for in its entertainment value.

    Rating: 6/10

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  • “Heh heh. You hit like a vegetarian!”

    Now this was a movie to sit back and enjoy watching two old action veterans doing it all over again. Who thought these two gentlemen would be completely extinguished and only live on their well-deserved reputation of the past, was definitely wrong. Forget “The Expendables”, “The Last Stand” and “Bullet to the head”, and don’t assume that this movie is comparable. Stallone and Schwarzenegger once again prove that they are still able to present a movie that’s entertaining, action-packed and dressed with a touch of humor. There is even a glimpse of a story. How is that possible ! Obviously you can see that some years have passed after they have been rolling their biceps frightfully in “Conan” and “Rambo”. But they still look tough enough and are able to kick some butt.

    Admittedly the topic “Escaping from a prison” isn’t very original. The fact that Ray Breslin (Sly) is an expert in this field and volunteers to be locked into such facilities to find the weaknesses and always manages to escape , I found a brilliant idea. The ultimate test he has to take is on an unknown place for his team and turns out to be a hard mission to deal with . Emil Rottmayer (Arnie) is also locked up in this prison and eventually helps to ensure that Ray can escape and catch the person that set him up in the first place.

    Stallone plays a convincing role as an expert and I’m sure he kept training hard in all these years since he still looks stunningly muscled. Schwarzenegger also still has rock hard muscles, only his facial features betray his upcoming retirement. To my surprise he tries a rather successful attempt at acting. It’s not just a mumbled English with a heavy Austrian accent. No way. Sometimes there are full dialogues, sometimes surprisingly with a comedic twist. The moment he starts whining in his own mother tongue while in the isolation cell, is actually hilarious but also admirable convincing. The scene on the stairs where they make a snapshot made me laugh so hard I almost had tears in my eyes . I repeated that fragment probably five times ! The action part is similar to the better films in which both men have acted and not the plain dumb violence as used in “Commando” or the latest “Rambo” movie which apparently was intended to get the score of shot opponents as high as possible. I thought the end was perhaps a bit exaggerated and over the top. But that didn’t really bother me at all.

    The supporting roles weren’t that bad either. Jim Caviezel played convincingly the ice-cold prison director Hobbes . Even 50 Cent didn’t irritate me this time and wasn’t that bad.

    Are you in for a decent and nicely put together action movie, then “Escape Plan” is a must see. It’s filled with guaranteed action scenes and humorous one-liners . Sly and Arnie thus prove that they really are the crème de la crème in this genre . Hopefully there will be even more enjoyable movies like this in the future !

  • Here’s a movie with a great title, a great movie poster, a great trailer and a great pairing of legendary action stars. The two “Escape Plan” (R, 1:56) co-stars have made (as of 2013) a combined total of over 100 films. This movie is perfectly named because it tells you what the story is about without revealing whether the setup results in a successful conclusion for its protagonists. You may think that you know how this movie will end, but nothing is guaranteed in this intricate and twisty action thriller.

    Sylvester Stallone stars as Ray Breslin, a man who makes his living breaking out of maximum security prisons to show prison officials the flaws in their designs, procedures, personnel or some combination thereof. Breslin is the best at what he does. He wrote the book on prison security – literally. As the film opens, Breslin is executing his latest escape plan by making a series of very curious preparations. When he’s out and his boss (Vincent D’Onofrio, playing nicely against type) tells the prison’s warden why Breslin was really there and allows Breslin to explain how he escaped, the payoff is clever and impressive. All this leads to his most challenging (and lucrative) assignment yet – testing the security of a new type of prison, one designed for individuals who various governments around the world want… disappeared. Breslin’s ego and greed lead him to take the job, but he soon finds out that he’s got more than he bargained for and he may not be there for the reasons that he was told when he was hired.

    The warden is played by Jim Caviezel who makes a deliciously dry villain. (It’s also a fun bit of casting, considering that his first starring role was in 2002’s underrated “The Count of Monte Cristo”, in which he plays a man unjustly sent to a remote prison by people who want HIM disappeared.) Breslin is soon befriended by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character, Emil Rottmayer, an inmate who has some information that the warden seems determined to get out of him (ironically, similar to the situation we see with a prisoner who befriends Jim Caviezel’s innocent man in “Monte Cristo”.) It’s not long before Rottmayer is using his considerable strength and knowledge of the prison to help Breslin engineer his escape, in exchange for Breslin’s promise to take him along. Meanwhile, Amy Ryan, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Sam Neill and Vinnie Jones lend their considerable talents in important supporting roles.

    This is a thinking person’s action thriller… for the most part. The prison that Breslin finds himself stuck in is uniquely designed and looks to be impossible to escape, and the reveal of its location is pretty wild. Breslin is brilliant and resourceful (call him the MacGyver of prison breaks), while Rottmayer is an indispensable ally with an intriguing level of mystery to him. Breslin’s plans and tricks are highly original and fun to watch play out. This is the best film and some of the best acting that I’ve seen out of both Stallone and Schwarzenegger is many years. Unfortunately, towards the end, the movie falls back on well-worn action film tropes that are very familiar to long-time fans of Stallone and Schwarzenegger, and the story’s resolution feels a bit cheesy and similarly reminiscent of the two stars’ heyday. In addition, some of the questions the film raises about the main character’s backgrounds aren’t as clearly answered as they should have been. As great as most of this film was, as a whole, “Escape Plan” is only able to make off with a “B+” from me.

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