‘Escape Plan 2’ is plainly awful (Movie Review)

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Film: “Escape Plan 2: Hades” Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Dave Bautista, Huang Xioming; Director: Steven C. Miller; Rating: 1/2 star

Mumbai, June 29 (IANS) Ranbir Kapoor can exhale. Sylvester Stallone is no competition for him, not this week at least.

You know a film is in grave jeopardy when despite filled with high-octane action it almost puts you to sleep. If there is any concept of cinematic entertainment akin to “soporific slickness”, then this is it.

“Escape Plan 2” makes all the right noises. The jungle calls inviting us to enjoy bones vehicles and egos being crushed to a pulp — all done at an ear-splitting decibel.

The action director (the director seems missing in action) fills up the frames with flaming cars, blazing guns, bugling biceps and flaring nostrils.

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All of these come-hithers amount to zilch in a film so devoid of intelligence and basic common-sense, it makes the last Kamal R. Khan outing look like a masterpiece.

A monster-piece of stunted dimensions “Escape Plan 2” is specially disappointing to Rambo fans, who expect Sylvester Stallone to take centre stage again, as he did in the first Escape Plan film in 2013.

This time Stallone’s role is dishearteningly stilted. To match his dialogue delivery, I suppose. The facial muscles have frozen even more with time and what was the Sexy Rambo Drawl at one time is now simply the 72-year Old Man’s Drawl.

Sad.

Worse is the length of Stallone’s role. He seems to be suauntering in an out of the skimpy script perhaps waiting for the next Rambo film to happen. While it does, he could well have used his time in better pursuits than this prison-break actioner which makes you break into sweaty rashes as it reduces the plot to a pulp and logic to ashes.

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Without beating around the battered bush — the way this apology of a stunt spree does — it can be revealed that Chinese star Huang has the main part here. And it must be said that Huang’s stunt moves in the prison fights are very impressive. Unfortunately this Chinese battering ram battles it alone.

The rest of the cast playing prison inmates look like they are letting the body-doubles and CGs do all the dirty deeds.

Can’t blame the actors for being lazy. They are only following the script. The outline of the hi-tech prison resembles the interiors of a tacky video game designed by a company that is struggling for survival. The desperation shows.

What can we say about “Escape Plan 2” that doesn’t sound rude? This is the action film we were all NOT waiting for. Part 3 is on the way. Any escape plans from Escape Plans for the audience?

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–IANS

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