Film Reviews, Short Review

Escape From New York (1981)


Despite being an entertaining dystopian action film, Escape From New York feels like a missed opportunity. Though it has a pointed social context, it remains somewhat lackadaisically paced and awkwardly told, as if Carpenter had too many ideas in this case; the pure, efficient tension of The Thing or Halloween is nowhere to be seen here. Then again, this is perhaps his most visually extravagant picture, and the concept alone – near-future Manhattan turned into a maximum security prison – is enough to sustain interest. On top of that, the cast is brilliant, from a sneering Kurt Russell to a stern Lee Van Cleef to the ever classy presence of both Donald Pleasence and Harry Dean Stanton. Despite all this, Escape From New York remains simply a very good film rather than a great one, but I won’t begrudge it that.


One thought on “Escape From New York (1981)

  1. Cuffs says:

    No question about ‘For A Few Dollars More’. Van Cleef is brilliant, flawless and wears black better than any western actor. He had the greatest face of all time and the intensity he showed was masterful.


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