Escape from L.A.
It stretches the very definition of "pathetic" when a filmmaker has so few creative inspirations that he's forced to rip himself off.
If I were a complete, lazy, uncreative loser, I would write thisreview by taking the "Escape from New York" review I wrote some time ago and simply have my computer replace all the uses of "New York" with "L.A." and be done with it.
It stretches the very definition of "pathetic" when a filmmaker has so few creative inspirations that he's forced to rip himself off. It's one thing to make a sequel; it's quite another to make the same exact movie and only change a few character names and the setting. Next thing you know, Robert James Waller will take "Bridges of Madison County," change the names of the protagonists to "Tiffany" and "Keanu," set it in California and resell it as "Bridges of Orange County."
John Carpenter, Kurt Russell and Debra Hill guide this film with all the storytelling skills of a senile old man who forgets he recounted the same tale but five minutes ago. Snake Plissken (Russell) is persuaded by the head of security (Stacy Keach) to go into the city-turned-prison (just like the first film) to rescue a black box that the president's (Cliff Robertson) daughter has stolen. Snake's motivation is a deadly implanted malady (just like the first film), evidenced by an ominous timer on his arm (just like first film).
In L.A. there's a guy who can drive Snake around (Steve Buscemi this time/Ernest Borgnine last time), a girl who can help him (Valerie Galino/Adrienne Barbeau) and a leader of a renegade band of evil misfits (George Corraface/Isaac Hayes). Basically, "Escape from L.A." is a film that moviegoers have already swallowed and digested. Ask yourself how it's possible for someone to re-consume what's already been digested and you'll get a good sense of what "Escape from L.A." tastes like.
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