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The Escapist


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Product Details

  • Actors: Steven Mackintosh, Brian Cox, Liam Cunningham, Joseph Fiennes, Damian Lewis
  • Directors: Robert Wyatt, Rupert Wyatt
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Closed-captioned, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: MPI HOME VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: January 26, 2010
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002TZS5N8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #113,448 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Escapist" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

5 men. 4 walls. 1 plan.
The jailbreak genre has a new white-knuckle classic: Brian Cox of Zodiac and The Bourne Supremacy stars as convict Frank Perry, a tough lifer determined to bust out of a London penitentiary to see his terminally ill daughter before she dies. But first he ll have to assemble a hardcore crew, battle the brutal prison kingpin, and pull off one of the most daring and suspenseful escapes in movie history. Joseph Flennes (Shakespeare in Love), Liam Cunningham (Hunger), Sue Jorge (City of God), Dominic Cooper (Mamma Mia!), Steven Mackintosh (Underworld: Rise of the Lycans) and Damian Lewis (Life) co-star in this intense and internationally acclaimed debut feature from co-writer/director Rupert Wyatt, featuring the exclusive song The Escapist by Coldplay.

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 8, 2009
Format: DVD
THE ESCAPIST, written by Daniel Hardy and Rupert Wyatt who also is the amazingly fine director, takes place almost entirely in a London prison. The main character is Frank (Brian Cox, in a brilliant turn) is a lifer who receives a note that his daughter is a junkie in dire straits and becomes obsessed with escaping prison to make amends with her. He gathers a strange, disparate group of fellow inmates to complete tasks in his carefully planned but exceptionally dangerous escape: Brodie (Liam Cunningham) has the brains, Viv Batista (Seu Jorge) has the drugs, Leny Drake (Joseph Fiennes) has the hands and cunning. In order to keep his escape plans secret he must overcomes the wiles of the prison inmate leader Rizza (Damian Lewis) whose sicko brother Tony (Steven Mackintosh) causes problems, including the physical abuse of a very young newcomer inmate Lacey (Dominic Cooper) whose loathing for Tony's endless advances drives him to the point of causing a major glitch in Frank's plan. But the escape plan proceeds and the film is a back and forth play between the planning and the actual process of the escape. Little is said in words in this film: most of the action comes for the faces and eye to eye encounters that drive the relentless attempt to escape to conclusion. And the ending will surprise every viewer, so cleverly has this story been prepared and told.

The acting is exceptional and the tenor of the film is greatly enhanced by the suspenseful cinematography by Philipp Blaubach. Benjamin Wallfisch provides some haunting, almost a cappella songs that heighten the intensity of the drama by commenting on it, and in other portions his musical score is the sort that maximizes the emotional aspect of the film rather than drawing attention to the music itself. This is far more than just another prison break film. This is a polished psychological thriller that deserves wide attention. Now, where is the DVD on Amazon.com? Surely it will appear soon. Grady Harp
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By The Movie Man VINE VOICE on January 28, 2010
Format: DVD
"The Escapist" is a thriller about Frank Perry (Brian Cox), a tough lifer determined to bust out of a London penitentiary to see his terminally ill daughter before she dies. First, however, he'll have to assemble a hardcore crew, battle the brutal prison kingpin, and pull off a daring, suspenseful escape. Director Rupert Wyatt cuts back and forth between the escape in progress and the days leading up to it.
Prison films are not new, but "The Escapist" manages to make a familiar plot fresh thanks to well-written characterizations and a terrific performance by Brian Cox. The success or failure of a prison escape flick depends on whether we care about the characters, and Cox, along with Joseph Fiennes, Liam Cunningham, Dominic Cooper, Steven Mackintosh, and Damian Lewis, provide solid portrayals. The twist here is that the escape plot is motivated by a man longing to see his dying child one last time. Also, the film contains a climactic secret that is unexpected and actually works. There are no bonus extras in this bare-bones Widescreen release.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By K. Swanson TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 13, 2010
Format: DVD
4.2 stars

Rupert Wyatt scored big on this, his first feature film. He nails it as both writer and director; the characters are interesting and believable, the movie looks grimly gorgeous, and his time-shifting script pays off in the end in unexpected ways. He pulls fine performances from the entire cast, with Brian Cox leading the way. The music is also first-rate, always in tune with the director's intentions and often quite moving in its own right. It is in fact a very smart film in most every way; even the title takes on great resonance as the tale plays out.

I'm surprised there aren't more reviews of this here; it's a fine film, and maybe the best prison break movie since Shawshank. Give it time and I'm guessing The Escapist will become a true cult favorite, taking its deserved place just below such genre masterpieces as Papillon, Shawshank, and the Alcatraz films.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Eric Sanberg on November 3, 2011
Format: DVD
I like rubber reality movies. They give me something to wrap my head around and, when done well, offer up some great surprises. I also like prison escape movies and film history is replete with some great ones. Here the two are joined with some really nifty results.

Here's the scoop. Brian Cox is in prison. An old nasty prison at that. He gets word that his daughter has become a junkie. She's had two heart attacks and won't survive a third. He needs to escape and try to save her. He hooks up with a few of his prison mates and concocts an escape plan. So, of course, the question becomes: Will the plan work?

This is a way cool movie. They cross cut between the escape itself and various events leading up to it. Truth be told, the cross cutting and the heavy British accents left me a bit confused at times, but pretty much everything got straightened out by the end. The prison scenes depicted many of the same things seen in similar movies. Bad guys and really bad guys who will kill you if you step out of line. Prison guards who look the other way when bad stuff happens. Homosexuality and guys who procure stuff that isn't supposed to be inside a prison. These things aren't new but they're done very well here. The escape itself is good. It's clever but not sensational, so you believe it. The punchline blew me away. It made me want to see the movie again to see what hints they might have provided to lead up to the big surprise.

Brian Cox is his usual good self. Damian Lewis is great as an effeminate, brutal inmate who is pretty much the king of the hill. Joe Feinnes does a standup job as do all the other players. The production values are good but this is just an outstanding movie overall. It moves like a freight train with nary a dull moment. For my dollar it was more than worth the time I invested to watch it.
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