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Escape Plan (2013)

Escape PlanA review by C J Dee

Ray Breslin (Stallone) is the man with the escape plan. He infiltrates prisons around America to discover their weaknesses, break out and help them fix their security breaches.

His latest mission finds him double-crossed and in a facility the likes of which he has never seen before. While inside, he finds camaraderie with fellow inmate Rottmayer (Schwarzenegger) and the two men develop a new and improved escape plan.


Oh. Em. Eff. Gee. I love a good action movie as much as the next girl, but this was rubbish. Action filmmakers who try to recreate the fun of a silly action movie need to understand the genre and watch the classics because, if Escape Plan is any indication, they’re just not getting it.

Historical Sly and Arny movies

If you have ever seen a movie starring Sylvester Stallone or Arnold Schwarzenegger during the action genre’s prime (I refer of course to the 80s and early 90s), you know they are rife with delightfully cheesy one liners, ‘splosions, and testosterone.

Needs more cheese

Cheesy one liners? The best on offer was Arnie telling Sly he hits like a vegetarian. I actually watched a scene where the good guy and the bad guy were fist fighting, whoever had the upper-hand simply used the phrase ‘motherf*cker’. Were that preceded by something witty, I would have excused it. As it stood it was the worst kind of sloppy, lazy writing.

‘Splosions? From memory, there was one at the beginning, one at the end and a fairly unimpressive gun fight.

Testosterone? It was there but was also unimpressive. The entire cast felt like they were just going through the motions.

The verdict

Escape Plan is the result of nearly 30 years contemplating a Sly and Arnie movie. With that much preparation time, the end result should have been tight and sharp. The end result though is underwhelming to say the least.

Just don’t bother. If you want to watch a fun prison escape movie, watch Tango & Cash (1989).

‘Doctors are men, who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less, for men, of whom they know nothing at all.’

Director: Mikael Håfström
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Faran Tahir
Other notable appearances: 50 Cent, Amy Ryan, Sam Neill, Vincent D’Onofrio
Running time: 115 minutes
Watch this if you like: The creeping realisation that some ideas have a use-by date
Rating: full starfull starEmpty starEmpty starEmpty star 2 out of 5 stars

Nalini is an award-winning writer and artist as well as managing editor of Dark Matter Zine.


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