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REVIEW: Escape Plan (2013) 4K UHD Blu-Ray | ManlyMovie

REVIEW: Escape Plan (2013) 4K UHD Blu-Ray

We declared Escape Plan to be the Manliest Movie of 2013. None of this ‘it should’ve came 20 years ago’ bullshit. It came at a time when we needed it most. In the midst of a girlie-man takeover of movies, where everything up there on the screen looks like the celluloid equivalent of a bag of Skittles, comes some respite. The big guns have been brought up, this is a beer and steak movie. A genre favorite – the prison break out movie (up there with the manhunt movie, these are obligatory Manly genres), combines forces with Stallone and Schwarzenegger. And not a moment too late. Just when I thought the game was up and there were too many vegetarian movies coming at us, my batteries get recharged and hope reignited. Hell, it even has some political intrigue!

And now, finally, it’s on 4K Blu Ray.

MAIN FEATURE

Stallone (Ray Breslin) earns a living being dropped into prisons and testing their defense mettle by breaking out of them. Great concept – why hasn’t someone gone here before? Anyway, his biggest job ever, busting out of a high-tech maximum security prison (think the prison from ‘Face/Off’) has him double crossed and locked down for real. With another inmate (Schwarzenegger), the game is on to bust out. Another (mystery) character and subplot are included here, but in the end it’s really surplus to requirement. This isn’t a straight action movie and to be honest, I would’ve been disappointed if it was. It’s a thriller first, action movie second – as it should be. Although it doesn’t quite have the patience or guile of, say, Escape From Alcatraz (1979), it is refreshing to see Stallone/Breslin take on Warden Caviezel in a game of wits. Jim Caviezel, by the way, this guy is one cool fucking cat. His death scene, and how he plays it, borderline extraordinarily fucking manly.

The big selling point here is the team up of Schwarzenegger and Stallone. While Stallone is solid as ever, this is the first time in ten years (Terminator 3) that I felt like I was watching a real ‘Schwarzenegger’ movie on release week, and I really can’t remember how long since watching a good Arnie movie on release week. The Expendables movies were mere cameos. The Last Stand was sedate and a bit flat. But here, within minutes I felt something I haven’t felt in a long, long time – growing anticipation to see the Oak on screen. And the movie is clever enough to hold off introducing him straight away. When he does appear, and at last this isn’t one of those rip off two week extended cameos, he nails it and steals the show. Arnie is his old towering figure of monstrous charisma. Funny, huge screen presence, clearly enjoying himself and armed with hilarious put-downs and one liners.

There are imperfections though. The aforementioned mystery ‘subplot’ is half-baked and very predictable, I’m not sure how anyone won’t see it coming. The fight scenes are also weak, especially an encounter between Stallone and Vinnie Jones. The dreaded shaking-cam syndrome raises its ugly head with that fight, disappointing. That said, the finale/escape is very well played, like an extended version of Cage’s bust out from the Face/Off prison. One scene in particular sent shivers up my fucking spine. Schwarzenegger, y’see, holds off a wave of enemies (big body count) with a SAW LMG. The director slows proceedings down to let us relish this moment of exceptional Movie Mandom. During that short sequence, which I could almost say is worth the price of admittance for anyone born between 1970-90, my entire youth of VHS memories flashed through my brain. Bravo to this director, if you didn’t get anything else right, you had to nail this. And you did. The Last Stand tried it with the Maxim Gun and failed.

 

 

DISC RELEASE

The film now comes on 4K UHD Blu-Ray.

I was a bit skeptical heading into this, because we’re not actually looking at a native 4K master, rather an upscaled 2K digital intermediate.  Often this means you can get borderline or outright ripped off.  But honestly, the first impression and one that lasts until the film completes, is that you would be hard pressed to tell that it isn’t native 4K.

Looking at the film, the detail is so clear that I could pick out the pock marks on the cold steel doors that holds Stallone in his cell.  I also found myself looking at Jim Caviezel’s watch, you can easily tell the time, you can also tell what brand it is (it’s a nice watch, I didn’t notice on the 1080p release).  Also, the film is now five years old and I did sort of notice how much younger both Stallone and Arnold look in this movie… their true faces are definitely revealed.

Maybe on the downside though, the CGI (used sparingly in the movie) is exposed much more, the wide shots of the boat look suspect, but those aren’t used often.

Another positive for this release is the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 soundtrack.  This hits you instantly, right alongside the new image quality.  Because at the start, Ray Breslin must listen intently to the goings on outside his cell in order to break out of the first prison.  You are steeped in intricate audio atmosphere, it really helps.

Finally there are the extras.  All of these are on the second 1080p disc.

The commentary is standard fare with Håfström and writer Miles Chapman.  It’s probably the first time I’ve heard a commentary where both men weren’t even in the same city.  Expect the usual – a shitload of trivia but thankfully both seem into it and appreciative of the spectacle.  Finally for extras, a set of half hour behind the scenes documentaries with Sly, Arnold and Co. and ten minutes of deleted scenes.

36 Comments

  1. Avatar

    juanjo albertez

    June 16, 2018 at 11:04 am

    I know it’s kinda off topic, but I just saw Hades and it’s shit. Boring, bad acting, bad script, cheap CGI, terrible photography and bad directing. Stallone is on screen for about 15 minutes if all his scenes are put together and Bautista, for 5. The so-called action scenes are terrible and they come out of nowhere without any reason to be. Sly, whose face has crossed the invisible line of deformity, seems uninterested in the movie and in autopilot. A movie which deals with the whole youngsters and new-generations subject while Stallone plays the mentor role, with many of his lines being heard in off.

    Skip it and watch the first one.

    • Avatar

      AlTeo

      June 16, 2018 at 6:35 pm

      How’d you manage see it?

    • Avatar

      French Predator

      June 16, 2018 at 8:39 pm

      Watched it it is diabolical.0/10

      • Avatar

        Mucho Macho

        June 16, 2018 at 9:02 pm

        sad shit to read

        • Avatar

          AlTeo

          June 17, 2018 at 4:30 am

          Damn it, this is exactly what I feared would happen the moment I saw Steven C Miller’s name attached to direct, I only saw Marauders but I fell asleep in that one, 0/10 from me for being an utter waste of time

          • Avatar

            The Night Rider

            June 17, 2018 at 11:39 am

            The Steven C Miller mystery – how does one man continuously land contracts despite throwing up nothing but celluloid radiation.

          • Avatar

            AlTeo

            June 17, 2018 at 12:58 pm

            https://m.imdb.com/title/tt6513656/reviews?ref_=m_tt_urv

            4.0 out of 10 and just out of the gate

          • Avatar

            Mucho Macho

            June 17, 2018 at 9:39 am

            I thought it was Marauders was ok.
            But this EP 2 needed to be better. Not expecting the “end all-be all” of action movies just not a lazy effort

      • Avatar

        The Night Rider

        June 17, 2018 at 11:38 am

        Been hearing very very bad things about EP2.

  2. Avatar

    AlTeo

    June 16, 2018 at 6:34 pm

    https://m.zavvi.com/blu-ray/escape-plan-zavvi-exclusive-limited-edition-steelbook/11573223.html

    Zavvi has a steelbook edition for the standard UK blu-ray if anyone’s interested in collectibles…

  3. Avatar

    Mucho Macho

    June 16, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    2013… we have come a long way my friend.
    Cheers to you captain Night

  4. Avatar

    Mucho Macho

    June 16, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Give respect to Jim Caviezel.
    Great actor but his career has suffered a bit because he believes in Jesus & those who claim to be the most “tolerant” are usually the ones who are the least likely to be tolerant of other people’s views or believes.

    • Avatar

      Jack Caine

      June 17, 2018 at 12:51 am

      Caviezel’s underrated. He’s one of the few people in Hollywood who still has morals and is willing to stand up for them. A lot of people forget he was the F-18 pilot that nuked Alcatraz at the end of The Rock. He would have made a better John Connor than Stahl, Bale or Clarke IMO. Even though his career took a knock back in 2004, he’s still done his share of manly movies.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKl5_OxKBn8

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_FK6JZr4lc

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gzRSVl8UewM

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ztj3ZH5yv0

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxdS8TP37I4

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7paq_cWOsc

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYHl_xe0pas

      • Avatar

        Mucho Macho

        June 17, 2018 at 1:59 am

        Yes sir Mr. Caine!
        Right you are.
        These are all good movies ( thanx for the trailers)
        I still remember watching Highwaymen in an empty theater & I liked the director who also directed the original “Hitcher” The van damme movie “Nowhere to Run” & the HBO movie “Gotti”. He does mostly TV work now.

        Caviezel’s tv show “Person of Interest” was an entertaining show too. It ran for about 5 seasons I believe. Caviezel is underrated
        for sure

    • Avatar

      Stig Johansen

      June 19, 2018 at 8:17 am

      Check out Outlander. Cool flick with Caviezel. Vikings vs an alien monster.

      • Avatar

        Mucho Macho

        June 19, 2018 at 9:21 am

        That’s the 1 I realized I had not watched fully . Saw a bit of it on cable & liked it. Gotta check it out. Thanx👍

        • Avatar

          Stig Johansen

          June 20, 2018 at 8:03 pm

          Don’t expect a masterpiece though. It is a proper popcorn flick for sure.

          • Avatar

            Mucho Macho

            June 20, 2018 at 10:00 pm

            U talking to an aficionado of cheesy B movies .
            Its on the list
            Gracias amigo

    • Avatar

      Andymovieman

      June 25, 2018 at 2:02 pm

      Frequency and deja vu were great with Jim Caviezel.

      • Avatar

        Mucho Macho

        June 25, 2018 at 7:49 pm

        cool movies👍

  5. Avatar

    Jack Caine

    June 16, 2018 at 11:58 pm

    Caviezel’s currently shooting another action drama called Sound of Freedom. It’s based on the true story of DHS Special Agent Timothy Ballard, who left Homeland Security to start Operation Underground Railroad, an organisation that fights back against child sex traffickers. The cast also includes Mira Sorvino, Kurt Fuller and Eduardo Verastegui and is directed by Mexican filmmaker Alejandro Monteverde. They’re aiming for a summer 2019 release date.

  6. Avatar

    French Predator

    June 16, 2018 at 8:45 pm

    The director made a nice horror flick room 1408 i was surprised by this movie it works well.there is a directors cut i think.

    • Avatar

      Mucho Macho

      June 16, 2018 at 9:14 pm

      Good flick “1408”
      There is a Director’s Cut.
      There’s a special edition which contains both the theatrical version and the director’s cut.

      The director in an said that he actually prefers a lot to of the theatrical version and would rather than the director’s cut. There’s a special edition that contains both the theatrical version and the director’s cut. it’s a good movie

      📼http://thisorthatedition.com/1408-2007/

      📼https://www.movie-censorship.com/report.php?ID=4430

      • Avatar

        AlTeo

        June 17, 2018 at 2:26 am

        He also made another movie with John Cusack, the neo noir “Shanghai” which wasn’t a great movie overall but was a cool throwback to the 1940s 1950s film noirs, plus Gong Li was hot af…

        Quite unfortunate was that the film was completed and released in China in 2010 but never got an American release until 2015 in a shitty limited release, not sure what Harvey Weinfuck was thinking when he shelved this for six years:
        https://youtu.be/YlDoBEp-JgQ

        • Avatar

          Mucho Macho

          June 17, 2018 at 6:18 am

          sad about the film cause it was good with a good cast.
          I used to be a big Cusack fan but in recent years his career has been shit & he seems uninterested as fuck to be in the movies his in. Also he’s just another actor suffering from Trump Deranged Syndrome and that shit is making people fucking act like crazy. But he’s done some movies that I’m incredibly fond of.
          love these 80s masterpieces
          📼https://youtu.be/d8r6X-aDsJM

          📼https://youtu.be/0xJu_qJw_Rk

          • Avatar

            Jake

            June 17, 2018 at 7:52 am

            I think Love and Mercy was the last Cusack film I saw but he was pretty good as an 80s-era Brian Wilson.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yaz5BT4YYyA

          • Avatar

            Mucho Macho

            June 17, 2018 at 9:45 am

            I only saw bits n pieces of this movie on Cable. As a Beach Boys fan I wanted to watch this movie but kinda forgot about it until now so thanx.
            He still does some good stuff from time to time when he wants to or feels like it.

      • Avatar

        French Predator

        June 17, 2018 at 11:00 am

        I liked both versions

        • Avatar

          Mucho Macho

          June 17, 2018 at 12:22 pm

          Me too

  7. Avatar

    Jeff

    June 17, 2018 at 4:17 am

    Dammit. I was really looking forward to this. I wonder what the hell part 3 will be like…

  8. Avatar

    Stig Johansen

    June 19, 2018 at 8:14 am

    Good movie. I have it on regular Bluray. I kind of liked The Last Stand too. Came out about the same time, I think.

    • Avatar

      Mucho Macho

      June 19, 2018 at 4:45 pm

      The Last Stand i actually think is a bit underrated. Is a good “Arnold Movie” obviously not his best but I never got the hatred for it

      • Avatar

        Stig Johansen

        June 20, 2018 at 8:04 pm

        I know. It had some very fun kills in it too. Arnold headshoting some fellow while he tackles him off a rooftop etc. Fun stuff.

        • Avatar

          Mucho Macho

          June 20, 2018 at 9:59 pm

          I am a fan of the movie. Its one i believe Arnold fans should’ve have neglected

  9. Avatar

    Andymovieman

    June 25, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    You know its been 30 years since tequila sunrise with Mel Gibson and Kurt Russell has been made? I just watched it yesterday to get ready for sicario 2.