Escape from New York

Escape from New York ★★★★½

“What’s wrong with Broadway?”

HELL. FUCKING. YES. I’m so tempted to upgrade to Patron right now just so I can have Snake Plissken at the top of my review. 

Plissken is a former Special Forces officer turned criminal who is offered a clean record in exchange for extracting the president from Manhattan. Unfortunately, in this 1997 dystopia, the entire island of Manhattan is a maximum security prison where factions of disheveled inmates haunt the fiery city ruins.

John Carpenter is quickly becoming one of my favorite directors, and not just because he knows how to make Kurt Russell look like a fucking badass. His ideologies, camerawork, production design, use of color, and god that MUSIC to me yield one of the most fascinating and enjoyable subgenres out there. It starts slow and atmospheric, but with these performances from Kurt, Adrienne Barbeau, Harry Dean Stanton and crew it always feels wholly real and compelling. Excellent use of miniatures and practical effects allow for a seamless marriage between action and dystopian sci fi. 

As a movie that grows with intensity throughout its runtime, the bridge scene in the third act hit me like a truck. What follows is a nihilist punchline for the ages a la Bandstand Boogie. What’s not to love?

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