MoviePhreak’s review published on Letterboxd:
3rd time. Saw for the first time when it came out in '81, then again in 1985. Thirty-three years later, and it's still a hyper-cool, super creepy and satisfyingly anti-social/anti-establishment movie that holds up.
Kurt Russell is perfectly cast as Snake Plissken, an anti-hero of the best sort. The supporting cast, from Barbeau to Borgnine to Pleasance are terrific and believable. Carpenter's soundtrack adds to the tension and discomfort as Snake races against the (literal) clock to save the President and save himself from death. It's one of those movies you just have to watch and enjoy for yourself.
James Cameron, pre-"Piranha 2" and "Terminator" lends his D.P. work and Matte artwork to the movie. Clearly, Carpenter's style (from the use of special effects to the synthesized soundtrack) rubbed off on Cameron, who matched and then surpassed his boss as a filmmaker.
But most of the credit here goes directly to Carpenter and Russell, who would go on to do 3 more films together - a great partnership.