Running Time: 116 minutes
Director: Mikael Håfström
Writers: Miles Chapman, Jason Keller
Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Jim Caviezel, Vinnie Jones
Synopsis: Ray Breslin (Stallone), the world`s foremost authority on structural security, agrees to take on one last job: breaking out of an ultra-secret, high-tech facility called “The Tomb.” But when he is wrongly imprisoned, he must recruit fellow inmate Emil Rottmayer (Schwarzenegger) to help devise a daring, nearly impossible plan to escape from the most protected and fortified prison ever built.
Release date in Malaysia: October 10th 2013
Distributor / studio(s): GSC Movies / Atmosphere Entertainment, Emmett/Furla Films
Verdict: What could beat seeing Arnold getting into a choppa and firing a big gun? Plenty of things. This is not quite the exciting, action-packed Stallone-Arnold sole partnership flick that we’ve all been waiting for. This version of the overused premise of planning an escape out of an high-tech maximum security facility is still considerably intriguing until it gets utterly illogical, overly reliant on convenience, cliched, corny and then the plot holes kick in. However, although it isn’t filled with mindless action like The Expendables 2, it’s actually the smarter film of the two veteran superstars in recent years. Stallone’s acting is as usual but Arnold’s performance of the comic relief-type of role is awkwardly potent. Their effortless on-screen chemistry saves Escape Plan from being a completely unwatchable 2-hour movie.
Girlfriend’s opinion: “I actually like watching these type of movies involving plans but this one’s a bit too ‘kua cheong’ (exaggerating) and confusing at the end.”
Malaysian censorship: I noticed 2 non-nude/sex scenes were strangely cut although the entire movie’s already filled with vulgarity and minor violence. But not that it matters anyway. The real issue we have is with the local film censorship board’s inconsistencies like this.
Malaysian subtitles: When the title of the film appears, the Malay subtitle says “Rancangan Melarikan Diri”. Shouldn’t “Pelan Melarikan Diri” be more accurate or at least sounds better? Who am I kidding, titles like this would never sound good in Malay language. And according to my girlfriend, the Chinese subtitles is worse than translating the dialogues directly using Google Translate. I wonder who hired these people for the job?
Rating: 2.5 / 5
[SPOILER SECTION BEGINS HERE]————————————————————————————-
Noticeable plot holes: Thanks to the annoying people in suits that walk around the cinema hall to forbid anyone from using any electronic devices during a preview/premiere screening, I couldn’t make any notes for this review and I’ll have to fully rely on my unreliable memory. So in the story, Ray Breslin (Stallone) is a former lawyer-turned-prison-Houdini who gets betrayed by Lester Clark (Vincent D’Onofrio), his prison-breaking business colleague, who wants him permanently be imprisoned in a maximum security facility that’s supposedly built without any prison flaws which Ray has discovered throughout the years. First let’s talk about the incompetency of these villains. The warden of this prison, Hobbs (Jim Caviezel), a supposedly meticulous and intelligent antagonist, knows who Ray is and he already suspects that he may be on to something so he moves him into a completely empty block of the prison. But when he gets tempted by Ray’s deal which is obviously a trick, he accepts his without even conditioning Ray to wear a bug (mic) to ensure that he’s not further planning anything with Emil Rottmayer (Arnold). Lester, on the other hand, doesn’t even have plan to cover up his doings from Ray’s closer colleagues or at least try to kill them to shut them all up ’cause they’d definitely question where Ray is. During the climax scene where Ray and Emil are trying to escape, the guards of the prison, all with machine guns, can’t even hit their targets who are right in front them running in straight line on their back. Then at the end, the former lawyer Ray sudden becomes a pistol specialist, being able to fire his gun accurately from a distance while hanging on the ladder of a helicopter. Also, when he shoots through the oil barrels, it doesn’t explode but when he shoots the barrels again after saying a corny punchline, the whole prison ship explodes. According to WithElwyn.com (who watches Mythbusters),the explosion shouldn’t have happened ’cause the oil barrels were merely oils and have no gas to trigger massive explosion like this one. Oh right, one more thing before that, apparently this “maximum security” prison’s cameras are “all connected” so opening up one single camera can switch off all the other cameras in the entire prison. What nonsense is all of this? Is Stallone trying to be the next Chuck Norris sensation?