Escape Plan 2: Hades (2018)


Years after he fought his way out of an inescapable prison, Ray Breslin has organized a new top-notch security force. But when one of his team members goes missing, Breslin must return to the hell he once escaped from. (IMDb)
Honestly, it’s not bad. Sure, the acting and dialogue are a bit cheesy, the plot is under-explained, and the actual escape seems to leave out lots of details, but the pacing is perfect: it never feels slow or boring and the tension is always rising. With the ever-present cool synth-y score, it kind of just feels like one big action sequence, which made for an engaging if unremarkable film. The villain and Huang’s lead have good energy and add some zest to the big boys’ cool and collected vibe.
6/10 (Mediocre)


Den of Thieves (2018)


A gritty crime saga which follows the lives of an elite unit of the LA County Sheriff’s Dept. and the state’s most successful bank robbery crew as the outlaws plan a seemingly impossible heist on the Federal Reserve Bank. (IMDb)
A capable cops and robbers flick with grit, an exciting heist, and a good twist is soured substantially by its terribly chauvinist treatment of women–they’re only things to be controlled, even as it’s trying and failing to make its males sympathetic (see the pointless prom date bit; Nick cheating on the mom, losing his daughters, going back to the strip club). Lose these scenes and you won’t be breaking any ground in female representation but you sure will have a tighter and less gross script.
6.5/10 (Alright)

Escape Plan (2013)

When a structural-security authority finds himself set up and incarcerated in the world’s most secret and secure prison, he has to use his skills to escape with help from the inside. (IMDb)
The “escape plan” aspect here doesn’t disappoint; the film is full of cool and exciting tricks and cons, complete with a couple of badass Stallone voice-overs. Elsewhere though, the dialogue often feels contrived, the acting stiff, the bad guy cliche, the secondary good guys (Ryan and 50 Cent) inconsequential, and the final twist an unnecessary complication. But even with all of the aforementioned said, this remains an entertaining film punctuated by a few classic action-movie one-liners.
6.5/10 (Alright)