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Escape From L.A.
2 reviews

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Movie Details

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Directed By
John Carpenter

Written By:
Kurt Russell, John Carpenter, Debra Hill

Kurt Russell, Georges Corraface, Stacy Keach, Peter Fonda, Steve Buscemi, Pam Grier, Valeria Golino, Cliff Robertson, Michelle Forbes, Bruce Campbell, A.J. Langer, Peter Jason, Al Leong

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Escape From L.A. (1996)
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Movie Review by Mike Thomas
February 20th, 2011

He Didn't Do It For the Money

Favorite Movie Quote: "This is L.A., and we can kill ANYBODY!"

Many people felt that when he re-visited Snake Pliskin, doing the same character, with the same plot, the same gimmicks, and the same twists, he and director John Carpenter were just trying to wring a few more dollars out of a successful cult movie.

But, after watching again, and this time, not immersing myself in the movie as I normally do, but watching as a cynical observer, ESCAPE from L.A. is a campy, but scary action movie that looks at a government that has placed their own self-importance above the safety and welfare of its citizens, and how the lone renegade, the anti-government, no, anti-government CONTROL rebel, is the only hope for humanity.

Russell was giggling like Burt Reynolds when he made the CANNONBALL movies, even under that constant sneer he wore throughout the entire movie. Each vignette of the movie - the wild, life-constantly-in-danger lifestyle of the L.A. prison (not really much different than it is now), the Basketball Game of Death, the Surfing Armageddon; you can't tell me that the entire movie wasn't done tongue-in-cheek, daring the audience to yell at the screen, “I don't #&$#*$% believe it!” and at the same time, laughing your butt off at the ridiculousness of it all. And, if you saw ESCAPE from NEW YORK, you pretty much knew the entire storyline, even down the death of his female accomplice. It was kind of like the “surprise” ending of RETURN of the JEDI.

On the serious side, this movie, made fifteen years ago, has shadows of what is happening now in 2011. The political correctness to the point of absurdity, the control the government wants to impose on our moralities, and the rebellion of the citizenry; and as in the movie MACHETE, the law-breakers are the only force of sanity for the country too closely reminds us all of the current state of affairs in our country today. It shows with too much accuracy, what could happen if the Separation of Church and State is no longer separated.

ESCAPE from L.A. is truly a campy, raucous romp of a kid in a candy shop, if your “sweet' consists of bullets and explosions (BIG explosions), and stunts that would give the Hooker Family nightmares for weeks. But look behind the curtain, and a foretelling of a very dangerous vision of American Life can make this a very scary movie indeed.

On my new rating scale of with 5 being drop everything and see the movie now; if you're female, bear the producers' children and 0 being burn down the theater, murder the movie staff, and violate their dog, this movie rates a hilarious, but cautious “4,” using my Bell Curve grading for B-Movies. Watch it again as a political commentator from MSNBC, not Fox News.

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