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Blu-ray Shopping Bag: Escape Plan Blu-ray

Expectations

By Robert T. Trate     February 03, 2014
Source: Mania.com


Escape Plan Blu-ray
© Summit Entertainment/Robert Trate
Expectations. You have or had a certain expectation for what a Sylvester Stallone or Arnold Schwarzenegger film would have. Since the two aging action stars have now come to together, our expectations have changed. Would you say that our expectations have lowered? Do we have no expectations anymore? I think the appeal is all that remains. We know that that it can and did work in The Expendables. The flip side to that is The Expendables 2. Yikes. Breaking from those characters and film series, we now have Mikael Hafstron’s Escape Plan. It’s a role of the dice and one that I was willing to take. 
 
The premise is what got me to give up my time and money. Stallone plays Ray Breslin, a professional prison escape artist. He is hired to break out of a new shadow prison that is not a part of any government. It is a prison where governments and people send their most undesirables to disappear. The money is right, the challenge is there, and Breslin is in. 
 
Of course, it goes wrong and it is a all a double cross to get Breslin to disappear. I didn’t ruin anything because this was all set up in the trailer. In a lot of ways, Escape Plan is a modern day Mission Impossible. Stallone has a team to get him out of these prisons. “No one breaks out alone” is an appropriate tag line for the film. Stallone’s team is comprised of Amy Ryan (undercover), Vincent D’Onofrio (the business) and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson (techno thug). We witness their camaraderie and efficiency in the opening sequence of the film. All the characters play really well together and stay within the confines of their roles. In short, no one is trying to make more out of the role they are given. Mikael Hafstron spends 25-30 minutes on setting up these characters and this world while wrapping it all around the next job. This is time well spent, not only for the characters, but the audience as well.  
 
When Breslin gets into the prison, he knows immediately that this is not going to go right. Breslin witnesses an unauthorized killing by one of the guards and upon saying his safe word to the warden, he knows that he is trapped with no one to help him. Thus begins his true challenge, the escape, but he will need help. Enter Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Emil Rottmayer. 
 
Schwarzenegger is really the lynch pin in the film. Can he share the screen with Stallone? In both of The Expendables films, he is more of a side character. Here, the two men, both on and off the screen, must have the chops to pull off both the movie and the escape. To get down to brass tacts, Schwarzenegger nails it. So much so that I actually had a realization of numerous things in his performance. Schwarzenegger probably speaks his most consecutive lines of dialogue ever in this film. Face it, most of the time he delivers a quick line or comeback to someone else’s. In Escape Plan, we get a great scene out of a torture moment and probably the best performance of his career.  I was actually blown away and saddened that perhaps old Arnie may have wasted a few years of his acting career being Governor. Hands down, Maniacs, though not an Academy Award winning performance, this is the best performance Arnold has ever given.
I knew that this film was a team up between two aging action stars. Would it be Rocky and the Terminator? Dutch and Rambo? Perhaps it would be more Conan and the Demolition Man. What was on screen was a great tour de force of two actors that have both embraced their age and what they are really capable of. They pushed the boundaries of my expectations for both of them, and will do the same for your’s if you give Escape Plan a chance.

Top 5 Picks of the Week:
1. Escape Plan (Blu-Ray + DVD + Digital HD)
2. About Time (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet)
3. Night Of The Demons (Collector's Edition) [BluRay/DVD Combo] [Blu-ray]
4. Dallas Buyers Club (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD with UltraViolet)
5. DCU Justice League: War [Blu-ray]

ACTION / ADVENTURE / KUNG FU/ THRILLERS / WESTERNS

Death Wish: 40th Anniversary [Blu-ray] Starring Charles Bronson, Vincent Gardenia, Hope Lange

Escape Plan (Blu-Ray + DVD + Digital HD) Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone

Escape Plan Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone

Scorned [Blu-ray] Starring Annalynne McCord, Billy Zane and Viva Bianca

Scorned Starring Annalynne McCord, Billy Zane and Viva Bianca

The Lady Vanishes Starring Various (2013)

Violet & Daisy (2014)

ANIME

Akb0048 Next Stage: Season 2 [Blu-ray]

Akb0048 Next Stage: Season 2

Antique Bakery

Blessing of the Campanella

Fairy Tail: Part 8 (Blu-ray/DVD Combo) Starring Cherami Leigh, Todd Haberkorn and Colleen Clinkenbeard

Fruits Basket: The Complete Series (Classic) Starring Laura Bailey, John Burgmeier and Eric Vale

Moon Man Starring Katharina Thalbach, Ulrich Tukur and Corinna Harfouch

My Brother's Wife

Naughty Nurses

CARTOONS

DCU Justice League: War Starring Alan Tudyk, Michelle Monaghan, Shemar Moore and Sean Astin

DCU Justice League: War [Blu-ray] Starring Alan Tudyk, Michelle Monaghan, Shemar Moore and Sean Astin

Free Birds [Blu-ray]

Free Birds Starring Woody Harrelson and Amy Poehler

CLASSICS

The Adventures of Champion (Film Chest Restored Version) Starring Barry Curtis, Jim Bannon and Champion

COMEDY AND LOVE Mania Style

About Time (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet) Starring Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams, Bill Nighy

City of Angels [Blu-ray] Starring Nicolas Cage, Meg Ryan, Dennis Franz and Andre Braugher

Romeo & Juliet Starring Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth

Romeo & Juliet [Blu-ray] Starring Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth

The Three Stooges Collection - 6-Movie Set Starring Moe Howard, Larry Fine, Curly Howard and oe DeRita

Criterion Collection

Jules and Jim (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray/DVD) Starring Jeanne Moreau, Oskar Werner, Henri Serre and Marie Dubois

HORROR

Banshee Chapter Starring Katia Winter, Michael McMillian and Ted Levine

Code Red Starring Paul Logan, Forbes KB, Borislav Iliev and Mya-Lecia Naylor

Deadly Presence Starring Megan Lynn, Kathy Sue Holtorf and Sabrina Carmichael

Night Of The Demons (Collector's Edition) [BluRay/DVD Combo] [Blu-ray] Starring Cathy Podewell, Allison Barron and Alvin Alexis

Slaughter Daughter Starring Nicola Fiore, Leesa Rowland, Tim Dax and Ruby LaRocca

Witchboard (BluRay/DVD Combo) [Blu-ray] Starring Tawny Kitaen (1986)

MODERN CLASSICS on BLU-RAY

Million Dollar Baby: 10th Anniversary [Blu-ray] Starring Clint Eastwood, Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman

SCIENCE FICTION / FANTASY / SUPERHERO

Gotham City Serials - Batman/Batman And Robin Starring Lewis Wilson and Douglas Croft

Las Mujer Murcielago Starring Maura Monti, Roberto Canedo and Hector Godoy (1968)

The Tick: The Complete Series Starring Patrick Warburton and David Burke

TV LAND

The Broker's Man, Series 1 (1997)

Family Matters: Complete Fourth Season Starring Reginald Veljohnson, Jo Marie Payton, Rosetta Lenoire

Joanie Loves Chachi: Complete Series (1982)

Midsomer Murders, Set 23 (Blu-ray)

Midsomer Murders, Set 23

The White Queen: Season One Starring Max Irons, Amanda Hale, James Frain and Rebecca Ferguson

The White Queen: Season One [Blu-ray] Starring Max Irons, Amanda Hale, James Frain and Rebecca Ferguson

 

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COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 3 of 3
1 
krazyjoe 2/4/2014 10:25:36 AM

I really enjoyed Escape Plan. It was an awful lot of fun.

 

But why 'Yikes' on 'Expendables 2'? That movie was so much better than the first film. I thought the promise of the first film was great, but it failed to deliver as much over the top 80s action silliness as was promised. I felt that Part 2 definitly shined where the first one fell flat.

blankczech 2/4/2014 5:28:54 PM

In my humble opinion the most interesting thing listed here is "The Tick:  The Complete Series." Wish Trate had reviewed that instead of Escape Plan.  Mania just reviewed Escape Plan a few months ago when the movie was released.

RobertTrate 2/5/2014 8:31:46 AM

 blankczech, Comedy Central didn't offer it to us. To be timely, we usually get it ahead of time. Some studios don't supply older titles. I worked with Liz Vassey (Captain Libery) on a film in LA, would love to check her out in some superhero garb. I only saw her in jeans and a tight t-shirt for a month, it was a great 30 days. 

1 

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