STARRING: Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgine, Donald Pleasence, Isaac Hayes, Harry Dean Stanton

1981, 99 Minutes, Directed by: John Carpenter

escape.jpg (11948 bytes)Description: In the future, crime is out of control and New York City is a maximum security prison. Grabbing a bargaining chip right out of the air, convicts bring down the President's plane in bad old Gotham. Gruff Snake Plissken, a one-eyed warrior new to prison life, is coerced into bringing the President, and his cargo, out of this land of undesirables.

After a botched hijacking attempt, the President of the United States' private jet plane crashes unto Manhattan island. Not much of a problem you would say, except that the entire isle of Manhattan has been turned into a high-security prison! The government simply built a giant wall around the thing, mined the river and bridges and blows up anybody who so much as tries to escape! Needless to add, the President is immediately captured and held hostage by the criminals.

Into this scenario "Snake" Plisken (Kurt Russell) is thrown. He has to rescue the president within 24 hours or otherwise an explosive injected into his bloodstream will go off and he will die. They don't have anti-heroes like Snake on the silver screen anymore. He is one bad ass mother! When told about the president, his reaction is basically "so? Get a new one."

The film was made on a smallish budget and at times it shows. But overall the effects and sets are quite realistic and director John (The Thing, Dark Star) Carpenter keeps the whole stew boiling to make a rather enjoyable dinner. Bit like curry - its charms are hard to explain but still enjoyable.

If you haven't seen this one yet, rent it now!

(Followed by a tongue-in-cheek sequel Escape from L.A. in 1996 - fifteen years later!)


 # 98
 of the
Top 100 Sci-Fi Movies
 of all time




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