The Weinstein Company's newest release, No Escape, is not as horrible as you may think, but that’s not saying much. This weekend was really slow at the box office, so I decided to take a leap of faith and see if the Owen Wilson/Pierce Brosnan action duo could hold their weight. Ultimately, they were unable to for a large number of reasons, the most important reason being bad writing made dreadful by Owen Wilson. The film was not a complete waste of time, and may actually improve the career of one star, which will be discussed later on.
The biggest drawback of action movies is that there is a fine line between being over the top and being amazing. This film was able to grip the audience throughout most of the story and you could really feel the intensity the characters faced as they moved through waves of rebels attempting to kill them. But, there comes a point in every film like this where the audience must be given something deeper, or it will just become another throwaway film that will not be remembered. After watching the film, it is clear it will definitely fall into the latter half because of its lackluster story that relies on incredibly unrealistic action sequences to get out of perilous situations (at one point this includes throwing 70 pound children dozens of yards to adjacent rooftops). Sometimes these sequences do not always appear over the top because in movies, a certain sense of extreme is understandable if the characters are as large as their actions. Now let’s be honest here, Owen Wilson can never be an action star, and he can barely be a comedy actor. He simply just cannot carry an action movie on his own. The awkward and lackluster delivery that he is known for does not match the tone of the film. This could have been easily fixed if the writers of the film made Wilson a side character and focused more on the best part of the film, Pierce Brosnan.
The last few years, Brosnan has not enjoyed much of the lime light in Hollywood. In fact, after his several year run as James Bond, his acting career is pretty much non existent (think about it, the former James Bond was cast backseat in an action movie starring Owen Wilson). However, after No Escape, Brosnan has proven that he still can entertain audiences. Easily the best parts of the film were when a gray-haired, scar-bearing Brosnan was on screen reenacting his action star days. In contrast to his on screen counterparts, Brosnan was able to maintain the atmosphere that the film was trying to go for the whole time. To some it up in a simple way Brosnan just felt right. After viewing this film, it is apparent that Brosnan still has a lot left to contribute to the action genre. In fact, given the right opportunities, Brosnan can fill a similar role as fellow Irish born actor, Liam Neeson. Since Neeson has adopted the role of the old action star, he has witnessed a career resurgence allowing him to become the star of several action films including the Taken franchise. This shows that if Brosnan is able to play his cards right, he may soon find himself welcomed back onto Hollywood’s center stage.
At the end of the day, No Escape is a film you will try to escape from watching. It presents lazy writing with arguably one of the worst actors that Hollywood still takes seriously. The only redeeming value in it is we get a few action scenes of Pierce Brosnan, which audiences have been deprived of for quite some time. The only thing that anyone will take away from this is that we need Brosnan in more good action movies, and I am not talking like last years The November Man. Audiences, as well as Brosnan himself, deserve to see him in an action movie at the same caliber as Neeson’s Taken. No Escape is definitely not worth the time to watch and deserves 2 out of 5 reels.
Thank you for reading this week’s piece. This week we are featuring two polls below. We will have our normal user rating poll, where you can decide on how many reels No Escape gets, and we would also like you to share your thoughts on if Pierce Brosnan still has a spot in action films. As always, please share with your friends (or enemies) and thank you for visiting Celluloid Cinema.