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October 25th, 2013

Movie Review - Escape Plan

Escape Plan

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Faran Tahir, Amy Ryan, Sam Neill, Vincent D'Onofrio, Vinnie Jones, Matt Gerald, 50 Cent, Caitriona Balfe, and more.

Directed by: Mikael Håfström Screenplay by: Miles Chapman and Jason Keller (Arnell Jesko) Story by: Miles Chapman Cinematography by: Brendan Galvin Music by: Alex Heffes

Premise: Hired to break out of a new maximum security facility by the government, Ray Breslin soon finds out that matters aren't as they should be. And that someone has paid to have him kept there permanently. As his staff fruitlessly try to figure out what's happened to him, Breslin must find a way out on his own. (Rated R)


1) Acting - Total Thumbs Up: Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger together in a film, both with top billing - an action movie fan's dream come true. Stallone's closeups didn't do him any favors, the rheumy eye shots unflatteringly giving away his age, but Schwarzenegger looked great with the gray in his hair and the lovely sculpted beard. Watching the two trade quips and the occasional blow was most entertaining. Arnold had several great lines, and looked like he was really enjoying being part of the film.

Jim Caviezel was creepily delightful as Warden Hobbes. Faran Tahir was very convincing as both an enemy and later as a respected comrade in arms.

2) Special Effects - Total Thumbs Up: "Escape Plan" doesn't have a lot of obvious special effects, but the few that made an appearance were good. The shaft leak and the consequences of same were very well executed. The look and feel of the hidden prison for the most part worked rather well. It very much had the look and feel of a place taken straight out of first person shooter game.

3) Plot/Story - Thumbs Up: In general, the plot was quite entertaining. The clever tactics by Breslin and the inventiveness of some of the sequences were very nice. The prison set up looked great, though in reality it wasn't actually practical. For a hidden prison, with no real ties to any government or morals, the display of following rules like the exercise yard seemed odd. The dehumanizing of the guards by having them wear masks, however, was a brilliant touch.

The biggest problem with the plot was the unconvincing (and therefore unsatisfying) reason for why Ray was betrayed in the film. Otherwise the movie moved at a good pace, had several great moments, and even a surprise or two.

Of some slight amusement is the fact that Jim Caviezel is the warden of this prison. The actor once played Edmond Dantes in "The Count of Monte Cristo" - a man who escaped from an escape proof prison.

4) Locations/Cinematography - Total Thumbs Up: The fact we see Ray break out of a normal prison at the beginning, made for a great visual contrast for when we're shown Hobbes' super facility. The sweeping shots once Ray is able to gleam a clue as to the prison's location did much to truly portray the utter isolation and impossibility of gaining his freedom from Hobbes masterpiece.

Conclusion: "Escape Plan" is a fun action film. It's totally worth going to see it just for the Stallone and Schwarzenegger team up. Keep your suspension of disbelief on the high side and you'll have a fun time.

Rating: 3.75 put of 5 (Hubby's Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission)

Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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