If you were placed in a glass cube, that has three breathing holes, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean over a school of swimming sharks, how would you escape. This kind of scenario would probably make most people kiss their butts goodbye as they face what would be their death (either by starvation or eaten by sharks). But maybe after examining a million situations that end in fatality, that million and one idea will pop up that allows them a chance to survive. So they rock the cube enough to make it fall into the sea. The shark can’t bite it and by allowing the water to fill the chamber, they can open it and swim to safety. What happens later, that’s up to their plan (if there is one).
Stuff like this is only vague and probably wouldn’t transition in real life. But it is fun to think about how unorthodox these concepts can be. And if they can work, then maybe we should allow ourselves to think outside of the box (perfectly fitting for the cube story). So is there a way out of anything, no matter how impossible the environment is? Lets see if the action stars of Escape Plan can answer that.
The movie opens in a maximum-security prison where Ray Breslin (played by Sylvester Stallone) is sitting in a solitary confinement cell, just reading his bible and taking another drink of chocolate milk from lunch. One fire alarm later, security finds his cell empty. He is found by the side of a motel phone booth, ready to be caught. It turns out that he co-owns Breslin-Clark, a security firm that specializes in testing prisons by escaping from them to report on the little holes that helped him got out. They are offered a multimillion-dollar deal from a CIA agent to test a top-secret prison and he accepts.
Though it starts out fine (being taken away), but immediately, they remove Breslin’s tracking device and they drug him. He drifts in and out of conscience as they put him in a very dangerous spot. He wakes up to see that the spot is a complex series of glass cells with no windows to the outside. He meets with fellow inmate Emil Rottmayer (played by Arnold Schwarzenegger) and thinks they may be underground. After staging a fight to get into solitary confinement to study the place, Breslin finds he’s actually on a cargo ship. So along with the see all eyes of prison warden Willard Hobbs (played by Jim Caviezel), they need to find out where they are to even have a chance of escaping.
As I’ve stated before, seeing the older action stars like Stallone and Schwarzenegger gives me a rush of nostalgia. It really seems like that in this day in age, they are trying to recapture that eighties and nineties glory from before. The age shows, as this feels like the first half hour of Face/Off. That’s not necessarily a bad thing as the prison has a uniquely cool design, which even a guy like myself wouldn’t be able to break out of.
It is fun to get a look at the place as our heroes try everything to break free. I thought that I was going to sit through another Expendables-like movie where they spur away old people jokes against the run and gun action. I’ll also give credit for Escape Plan for not only steering away from that, but for even not having much gun action. A lot of it relies on stealth, using mechanics that MacGyver would have been proud of.
Schwarzenegger tones down his brawny man image to simply play a typical prison guy looking to get out. We even get an entire scene where he rambles in German for five minute to distract the guards Stallone on the other hand continues to show off his lone wolf persona that we’ve seen multiple times. So what you think your expecting from these two are probably what your going to get. I’d rather have them stick to what they know best then rather the attempt something “hip and cool” for the kids. It just old fashioned fun.
I’ll give this four prison keys out of five. Escape Plan is more or less another add on to your Stallone collection of senseless action films; it’s just a little better then I expected.