No Escape is 102 minutes of awesome, heart-pounding, intense, edge-of-your-seat, action and drama.
The early screening I went to was packed. The theater over 90% full.
Before the movie, there was the normal hub-bub of activity that occurs at these early screenings. Press, bloggers, and regular early screening fans saying “hi” to each other. The crinkling of popcorn bags. People getting up and down.
As the movie began, the audience settled in with a few whispers, coughs, and movement.
Fifteen minutes into No Escape, no one was moving. No one was snacking. The audience was hardly even breathing. I’ve never seen a packed theater so still. Everyone was totally adsorbed in the movie.
No Escape is that good. That intense. That captivating.
As you already know from the trailers, No Escape is about a family trapped in a foreign country undergoing a coup.
The filmmakers do a fantastic job of capturing the essence and feel of traveling to a third-world country.
Owen Wilson plays the dad, Jack Dwyer. I’m prone to like Wilson anyway, but he is really outstanding in this role. His dad-connection with the kids is spot-on.
Lake Bell plays the mom, Annie Dwyer. From loving wife to profound and sometimes ferocious mother, she is perfect.
The kids, Lucy and Beeze, played by Sterling Jerins and Claire Geare, are absolutely incredible. They bring so much to this film. Their understandably childish comments (they are children, after all) lead to some very brief comic relief in the film. Beeze’s embarrassing moment (no spoilers) is so very realistic and touching. Their terror is palpable.
Pierce Brosnan and Sahajak Boonthanakit are also great in No Escape.
The most endearing part of this film is how real this family is. It’s not some dysfunctional Hollywood-style broken family trying to get back together. Just a normal, loving, family caught in a huge, dangerous, mess.
No Escape is listed as being 103 minutes long. As I’ve already noted, 102 minutes of it is awesome.
There’s a brief part that is unnecessary and interrupts the flow of the movie. It’s like when you are watching “Bones” on TV and they have to stop what’s going on to make a politically correct point. Brosnan delivers the message. You’ll catch it when it happens. The idea is already built into the storyline, we don’t need to be told we’re the bad guys.
But don’t let that one minute stop you from going to what is otherwise a really outstanding movie. The action picks right back up after that and the awkward break can be forgotten about.
When our screening of No Escape was over, and people started to breathe again, comments like “wow” and “that was awesome” could be heard from the crowd. That doesn’t happen at every early screening I go to.
No Escape’s official release date is Wednesday, August 26, but it can be seen in some theaters starting on the 25th. It has a well earned R rating and is definitely not appropriate for children.
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