Escape Plan (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Mikael Håfström|
|Screenplay by||Miles Chapman
|Story by||Miles Chapman|
|Music by||Alex Heffes|
|Editing by||Elliot Greenberg|
|Distributed by||Summit Entertainment
|Running time||115 minutes|
Escape Plan (formerly known as Exit Plan and The Tomb) is a 2013 American action thriller film starring Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, Vinnie Jones, Vincent D'Onofrio and Amy Ryan. Escape Plan is directed by Swedish filmmaker Mikael Håfström, and is written by Miles Chapman and Arnell Jesko (Arnell Jesko is an anagram pen-name of Jason Keller). The film follows Stallone's character Ray Breslin, a structural engineer who is incarcerated in the world's most secret and secure prison, aided in his escape by fellow inmate Emil Rottmayer (Schwarzenegger).
Ray Breslin is a former prosecutor who co-owns Breslin-Clark, a Los Angeles–based security firm specializing in testing the reliability of maximum security prisons. He spends his life getting into prisons to study their designs and the guards' habits to find and exploit their weaknesses, thus enabling him to escape without a hitch or a victim. He claims his goal is to ensure that criminals sent to prison stay inside by eliminating the weakness of every prison.
One day, he and his business partner Lester Clark are offered a multimillion dollar deal by CIA agent Jessica Miller to test a top-secret prison and see if it is escape-proof. Breslin goes against all his own rules and chooses the money. He agrees to the deal and gets himself captured in New Orleans, Louisiana, under the guise of a Spanish terrorist named "Anthony Portos", but the plan goes awry when his captors remove the tracking microchip from his arm and drug him on the way to the prison, which thus disables him from ending the experiment by proving his identity.
Breslin wakes up in a complex of glass cells with no outside windows to indicate the prison's location. He meets fellow inmate Emil Rottmayer, and they both stage a fight for Breslin to study the solitary confinement cell, which uses high-powered halogen lights to disorient and dehydrate prisoners. Seeing that the cell floors are made of aluminum, but the rivets are steel, Breslin has Rottmayer procure a metal plate from Warden Willard Hobbes's office floor before the both of them and Muslim inmate Javed are once again thrown into solitary. Using the metal plate, Breslin focuses the reflection from the lights to heat the rivets and pop open the floor panel to reveal a passageway below.
He goes through the passageway and discovers that the prison is inside a cargo ship in the middle of the ocean, making a simple escape impossible in case of a possible break down. Breslin and Rottmayer continue to study the complex by learning the guards' daily routines, and Breslin gives Hobbes false information about Rottmayer's boss, Victor Mannheim. Meanwhile, Breslin's colleagues Abigail Ross and Hush grow suspicious of Clark when Breslin's paycheck for the job is frozen. They discover from hacked documents that the prison, codenamed "The Tomb", is owned by a for-profit organization linked to an unnamed privately owned security provider, and Clark was offered a US$5 million annual salary from them in exchange for keeping Breslin behind bars.
Back in the prison, Hobbes reveals to Breslin that he is aware of his identity, and with chief security officer Drake watching him, he wants to ensure that Breslin stays for the rest of his life in prison. Rottmayer has Javed convince Hobbes to bring him on deck to do his nightly prayer when he actually uses a makeshift sextant to get the ship's latitude. Using the latitude and observations of the weather, Breslin and Rottmayer deduce that they are in the Atlantic Ocean near Morocco. Breslin visits the infirmary of Dr. Kyrie and convinces him to help him and Rottmayer escape by sending an email to Mannheim. Breslin then transmits a false tap code message from his cell, giving Hobbes the impression that a riot will occur in cell block C. With majority of the security stationed at cell block C, Javed instigates a riot at cell block A, giving him, Breslin, and Rottmayer time to run toward the deck while a lockdown is initiated.
Breslin kills Drake, but Javed is shot dead by Hobbes and his men during their escape. Breslin goes to the engine room to reboot the electrical systems, giving Rottmayer time to open the deck hatch while a helicopter sent by Mannheim engages in a gunfight with the ship's crew. Rottmayer boards the helicopter while Breslin is flushed to the bottom of the ship by the automated water system. The helicopter picks up Breslin, but when Hobbes starts shooting at them, Breslin kills the warden by shooting a group of oil barrels in front of him.
They land on a beach in Morocco, where Rottmayer reveals that he is actually Mannheim, Miller is his daughter, "Portos" was a codeword used to alert Mannheim that Breslin was an ally, and Rottmayer was originally unaware that Breslin's cover story was fake. Later, at a Moroccan airfield, Ross informs Breslin that Clark had fled, but Hush tracked him in Miami, and locked him in a container aboard a cargo ship.
Early reports in 2010 speculated that Bruce Willis was cast as Ray Breslin. It was revealed by producer Mark Canton on The Matthew Aaron Show that Jim Caviezel had signed on to the film, playing the prison warden Hobbes.
It was announced in April 2012 that British actor Vinnie Jones had been signed on to co-star. Jones revealed to the newspaper The Sun that there are three inmates escaping from the prison. Jones played Drake, the corrupt and ruthless prison guard.
Variety and other media in the news stated that Amy Ryan, Vincent D'Onofrio, and 50 Cent had joined the cast of Escape Plan. It was confirmed in mid-April that 50 Cent would play the computer expert who was once incarcerated for cyber crimes helping Breslin's character escape, D'Onofrio would play the deputy director of the high-tech prison, and Ryan would play Stallone's business partner and his potential love interest.
In an interview with the British newspaper The Sun, Vinnie Jones stated that the film was to shoot April 16 to June 23 in New Orleans. Shooting for Escape Plan was also confirmed to take place in Louisiana in the spring of 2012. In August 2012, at The Expendables 2 conference, Arnold Schwarzenegger commented on the film and stated that filming had finished.
On April 9, 2013, it was officially announced that the film had been pushed back to a September 13, 2013 release and the film's title had been changed to Escape Plan. It was eventually released on October 18, 2013.
On June 27, 2013, a debut trailer of Escape Plan was released through the gaming website IGN.
The film was met with mixed reviews; it currently holds a 50% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 103 reviews. The Rotten Tomatoes consensus states: "As much fun as it is to see Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger team up onscreen, Escape Plan fails to offer much more than a pale imitation of 1980s popcorn thrills." The film also has a Metacritic score of 48 out of 100, based on 33 reviews.
Tom Huddleston of Time Out London gave the film two out of five stars, commenting that the film "would have made a perfect vehicle for, say, a Chuck Norris or even a Jean-Claude Van Damme. But these two redoubtable, enormously watchable old-school heroes deserve better." Ben Rawson-Jones of Digital Spy gave the film four out of five stars, commenting that it "defies those who wrote off the abilities of its stars to cut the muscular mustard in today's youth-orientated cultural climate. These supposedly old dogs have plenty of life—but their effectiveness relies on the foundation of a smart script that plays to their strengths and the audience's perception of their star personas." Neil Genzlinger of The New York Times said in his review: "Mikael Hafstrom, the director, pushes the suspense buttons efficiently, and the plot twists are disguised well enough for the not-very-demanding crowd this film will draw. The scenes with Mr. Stallone and Mr. Schwarzenegger are a little disappointing — it’s their first pairing as top-billed co-stars, yet the script never gives them the kind of memorable exchange that makes fans howl with delight. But all in all, Escape Plan does what it sets out to do."
Escape Plan was a success at the box office. Although it grossed only $25,132,228 domestically, it performed much better overseas. Coming in at No. 1 in several countries, with the total international gross more than doubling its $50 million budget at $112,192,336 and totaling a worldwide gross of $137,324,564. Although being successful outside of the United States, the domestic opening weekend, Escape Plan underperformed, grossing $9,885,732 from 2,883 theaters and debuted at number 4 on the box office chart.
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- "The Tomb is Now The Escape Plan". ComingSoon.net. Retrieved 2013-04-11.
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- Huddleston, Tom (2013-10-15). "Escape Plan". Time Out London. Retrieved 2013-10-16.
- Rawson-Jones, Ben (2013-10-14). "'Escape Plan' review: "Arnie and Sly rescue geriaction genre"". Digital Spy. Retrieved 2013-10-14.
- Genzlinger, Neil (2013-10-18). "Behind Bars, Where Anything Goes - Schwarzenegger and Stallone Star in Escape Plan". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-12-18.
- Official website
- Escape Plan at the Internet Movie Database
- Escape Plan at Rotten Tomatoes
- Escape Plan at Metacritic
- Escape Plan at Box Office Mojo