No Escape review
The Boy Scouts of America motto is and always has been, “Be Prepared”. I thought that meant to be ready for anything, but what it really amounts to is to be prepared for what your about to go through. It can be a simple vacation, a marathon or an event that you know is going to be bad. While you can’t be ready for everything, I tried my best to be ready for the unexpected. The only problem is that life seems to stay so much so the same, that it seems like that in the eyes of a witness, I’m wasting my time rather the preparing for anything. An economic breakdown or a zombie apocalypse would be a nice change of pace.
Travel and moving are two things we prepare for, yet always come across something that’s going to block our full enjoyment. It may be a bad hotel, an expected problem with the attraction your visiting, or it may even be the foreignness of the country your visiting. So far, the furthest I’ve traveled is Russia and while I had fun, I certainly felt out of place with the culture and the language barrier. Owen Wilson and his family face the ultimate culture shock in No Escape.
Jack Dwyer (played by Owen Wilson) is flying to an unknown region of Southeast Asia with his wife Annie (played by Lake Bell) and two daughters Lucy and Beeze to start a new life and career as an engineer for an American water company with residence there. Upon arrival, they see how much tighter and claustrophobic the environment is (not to mention a hotter and more humid condition), but seem to be in good hands when they are given a ride to the hotel by a British traveler Hammond (played by Pierce Brosnan) who reassures the family that their going to love the place.
With no working television, phones and internet, Jack heads out the next morning for an American newspaper. Just as he’s heading back to the hotel, he’s caught in the middle of a stand between a riot squad and a rebellion group. He makes it through the melee, but sees that the uprising is happening all over the city, so he figures that he needs to get his family to the American embassy. That going to prove to be more difficult then he anticipated as it seems like that the rebels are killing all Americans and have control of the city.
I’ll give No Escape credit that the idea of Americans caught in a political uprising in a foreign country is not a bad idea for a thriller. Perhaps if it went into more detail of the uprising and the turmoil that the country was facing along with a suitable action star, it could work. No Escape decided to take the “unknown danger” route by giving us vague information about the problem and even does not recognize the country. I guess they thought it would intensify the situation with the audience, but it comes off more like a Purge genocide.
The enemy rebels look more like zombies out for blood then people wanting something better. I know a dumb crowd can be easily persuaded for the wrong, but I have a hard time believing that every rebel to be just as merciless as portrayed in the movie.
The other problem lies on the main star Owen Wilson. I like this guy and believe he can be given plenty roles, however an action star he is not. He’s a bit too much of an everyman to step into the role and his voice defiantly does not fit one of an action star. Sure he can believably be an engineer, but I see more of an Ewen McGregor or Gerald Butler that can fit the shoes of both roles
I’ll give this two riot gears out of five. No Escape’s concept cannot escape bad villains and a bland hero. It also cannot escape a bad tone that makes the experience too unpleasant. I hope Owen Wilson takes this experience as a lesson that comedy may be his stronger suit then drama. Please escape this before it’s too late.