ESCAPE PLAN (2013)
Escape Plan is a routine but, thoroughly enjoyable action thriller elevated by being the first real team-up of Sly and Arnie… Arnie’s role in both Expendables flicks being barely more then a cameo… and a really top notch supporting cast. The story behind this thriller is of security firm co-owner Ray Breslin (Sylvester Stallone) whose expertise is testing the security of prisons by literally escaping from inside them. He’s hired by a CIA operative to test the supposedly escape proof “Tomb”, a secret high security penitentiary where the world’s most heinous criminals are sent to never be heard from again. But, it is actually a set-up and Ray’s incarceration is very real and whoever is behind it, has no intention of Ray ever getting out. But, Ray has other plans and seeks the help of fellow inmate Emil Rottmayer (Arnold Schwarzenegger) to escape from The Tomb and it’s sadistic warden (Jim Caviezel) and get payback from those responsible. It’s a shame it took this long for these two action juggernauts to get together because, they have a great chemistry and work really well together. Arnold especially gives some nice dramatic weight to his grizzled inmate with a secret and Sly is in top form as a man with very personal reasons for what he does. They really click well together and it would have been nice to see them do a movie like this in their prime… not that they don’t still have it, cause they do. And I like that neither man is trying to pretend they are still in their 30s and let the grey show and get up a little slower after being knocked down… but, they still get back up. And they couldn’t have a better supporting cast with Caviezel making a really cruel and slimy villain along with Vinnie Jones as Drake, an equally sadistic prison guard. We also get strong work from Sam Neil as the prison’s symapthetic doctor, Vincent D’Onofrio as Ray’s partner and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson as Ray’s friend and employee ‘Hush’. And the top notch cast helps as Director Mikael Håfström directs fairly by the numbers. The film is well paced and has some nice suspense and action scenes but, there is nothing groundbreaking or exceptional about how he films Miles Chapman and Jason Keller’s script. It’s a solid enough action thriller but, would be rather forgettable if not for the dynamic cast. And it is the cast that really makes this an entertaining movie and a fun throwback to the type of flicks both men made during their heyday in the 80s. If you are a fan of these two, it’s definitely worth a look and you’ll probably get a bang out of it like I did. A fun old school action movie with 2 of the genres greatest stars showing there is still some fire in the furnace. Also stars Amy Ryan and Ironman’s Faran Tahir as a fellow inmate.
A solid 3 bullets!