Ray Breslin (Sylvester Stallone) is the best at breaking out of maximum security prisons. To date, he's escaped from eight so-called "inescapable" institutions. There's a hefty new payday of $5 million if he can get out of the newest place, designed to put away those that must never be let out. The amount seems to good to be true. And it is. All too quickly, Breslin is stuck in "The Tomb" with a sadistic warden (Jim Caviezel) intent on keeping him there.
Fortunately, Breslin meets inmate Emil Rottmayer (Arnold Schwarzenegger) who might be able to help. (As the tagline reads: no one escapes alone.) So why not do a buddy flick with your former 80s action star rival? Will this be the film Sly and Arnie's fans have been waiting decades for?
No, but it's a fun time that doesn't overstay it's sentencing.
The supporting cast includes: Amy Ryan, Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, Vincent D'Onofrio and Sam Neill.
Here are five things to know before incarceration:
1. He said He'd Be Back, Arnie's Acting Again (For Reals). Post Governator, Schwarzenegger's return to the big screen has been at best amusing (cameo in The Expendables) and at worst distracting (flat line readings in Expendables 2 and The Last Stand). Director Mikael Håfström frees Arnie up from mindless action --though he does have a great moment with a big gun--so he can focus on what we've missed most: deadpan line deliveries recalibrated to his older, wiser frame ("You hit like a vegetarian"). Best of all: Arnie yelling like a crazy Austrian in solitary confinement. Subtitles included.
2. The Tomb. The film was originally called The Tomb before eventually given the blander title, Escape Plan. No worries, the environment of this impossible prison feels sci-fi. Each convict is encased in a glass cube. The environment poses vertical challenges as well with each cube stacked on top of the others. The bigger question for Breslin is where exactly is it located? Underground? The answer satisfies.
3. Reese's Latest Person of Interest. Jim Caviezel plays warden Hobbs as cold, methodical and not above getting his hands dirty. Unlike his POI alter ego, the suits he wears are all dark tones sans the white shirts. This man in a suit hopes to have Breslin's number up ASAP. Maybe a lovable German shepherd would have soothed his black heart?
4. Militia Always on Verge of Bustin' Cool Moves. The Jabbawockeez (Step-Up 3D, SYTYCD) dance crew concealed their faces behind white expressionless masks. No doubt about it, the guards working at "The Tomb" are fans, donning black ones. They use their masks to hide their faces so super escape artists like Breslin can't look for behavior patterns.
5. No Training Montage? Plenty of set pieces show the before-and-after of Breslin being a master escape artist. You know the drill: quick shots of Breslin looking at seemingly random events; guards on break, a carton of chocolate milk, a wad of sliced bread, etc. We appreciate seeing Sly outwit his oppressors instead of his normal rope-a-dope, but at the expense of a new track by Survivor? Surely, one of the these Ocean's Eleven-like moments would have been improved with an 80's music video. Guess even Stallone has to leave some of his old tricks in the past...