Sunday, February 19, 2006

"Escape from L.A." review

Escape from L.A. (1996)

Directed by John Carpenter
Writing credits John Carpenter

Kurt Russell.... Snake Plissken
A.J. Langer.... Utopia
Steve Buscemi.... Map to the Stars Eddie

Snaaaaake Plissken. You'll wish you were dead. Once again, Plissken gets his arm twisted by the government to do some dirty work. Instead of escaping from New York, this time he has to escape from LA. It's completely different! Snake gets thrown into LA and goes through the escaping motions in this terrible remake of the great "Escape from New York".

First, let me say something positive. Two words: Snake Plissken. Kurt Russell is the only good thing about this movie. He's up for it. Russell still looks cool in his all black leather outfit.

Unfortunately, the rest of "Escape from LA" is a goose egg. The overriding problem is that this movie is so deliberately campy that it turns Plissken, (one of the coolest of all movie heroes), into a toothless cartoon character.

There's one scene in the middle that knocks you over the head with its deliberate terribleness: Plissken surfs a giant wave through the city and lands in a guy's car. Egad. Awful. Everything copied from "Escape from New York" was watered down to flat beer level. Instead of a fight with spiked baseball bats, we get a basketball game. My God, this movie was a disaster.

Carpenter has given us so much joy over the years but this was terrible. Plissken was ready for a serious action movie but he had to settle for a campy remake. This was the nail in the coffin, head and heart of the franchise.

SCORE: 1 out of 4 surfing Snakes


the sneering (homo-phobic) snob said...

dr. gore, i`m afraid i have to vehemently disagree with you on this one, as far as i`m concerned "escape from l.a." is a marvellous film, better than "escape from new york". The film is packed with memorable sequences, and is topped off by one of the greatest endings from any film of the 90`s, ("welcome to the human race", truly superb). It never ceases to amaze me how great films like this struggle at the box-office and laughable mediocrity like "the dark knight" goes through the roof, the american movie-going public are so fickle and hypocritical. by the way when this film was shot in 1995 a.j. langer was 21, (3 years past her peak), but still an incredible bird, and a right little darlin`, i think you`ll agree !!!.

Dr. Gore ( said...

We must agree to disagree. "Escape from LA" was a disgrace. It was watered down cheese. "Escape from New York" is a classic that must be cherished. It is far superior to this weak sequel. I love Snake Plissken but all the love in the world couldn't save it.

As far as A.J. Langer's hotness, we are in agreement. Good to know we can find common ground.

owen said...

you sir have failed as a critic of this movie

joe said...

Dr. Gore is spot on, Escape from LA is a terrible remake, a missed opportunity. All the scenes with Fonda (and with many others!) are pointless. How can one say that crap be better than Escape from NY?