Escape from New York

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"1997. New York City is a walled maximum security prison. Breaking out is impossible. Breaking in is insane."
  • R
  • 1981
  • 1 hr 39 min
  • 7.1  (156,436)
  • 76

Escape from New York is a science-fiction action-thriller film from 1981 that was directed by John Carpenter. The movie is set in a dystopian future where the United States government has turned Manhattan Island into a maximum-security prison due to rising crime rates. The movie follows the story of a recently captured ex-military and war hero turned criminal, Snake Plissken, who must save the President of the United States after his plane crashes in the prison during a hostage rescue attempt.

The main character, Snake Plissken, is portrayed by Kurt Russell, and he is the heart and soul of the movie. Snake is a tough and uncompromising anti-hero who is initially unwilling to help the government save the President. Still, as he learns that he has a time bomb implanted inside his body that will kill him in 24 hours unless he returns with the President, he decides to take on the mission in exchange for his freedom.

The President of the United States is played by Donald Pleasance, and his character is a weak and helpless man who is in dire need of rescue. The movie's plot revolves around Snake's mission to navigate his way through the prison's dangerous and violent landscape, avoid the clutches of the warring gangs that rule the island, and save the President from the ruthless Duke of New York, who is played by Isaac Hayes.

The movie's special effects are impressive, considering the time it was created, and the film is notable for its distinctively gritty and dark tone. The film's portrayal of a dystopian New York is impressive, and the film is filled with creative and tense action sequences that keep the plot moving at a brisk pace.

John Carpenter's direction in Escape from New York is masterful, and he uses a variety of techniques to create a sense of tension, such as frequent close-ups of rain-slicked streets and the use of low lighting to create a sense of unease. The movie's soundtrack, composed by Carpenter himself, is iconic and adds an extra layer of tension to the film's action scenes.

The supporting cast includes actors such as Lee Van Cleef, who plays Bob Hauk, the government operative who manages the rescue mission and who initially brings Snake to the prison; Ernest Borgnine, who plays Cabbie, an eccentric taxi driver who provides Snake with much-needed transportation around the island; and Harry Dean Stanton, who plays Brain, the Duke's right-hand man who helps Snake in his mission.

Overall, Escape from New York is an enjoyable and well-crafted science-fiction thriller that showcases the talents of its cast and crew. The film's iconic anti-hero, Snake Plissken, has become a pop culture icon over the years, and the movie's grim portrayal of a dystopian future continues to captivate audiences today.

Escape from New York is a 1981 science fiction movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 39 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.1 and a MetaScore of 76.

Escape from New York
Where to Watch Escape from New York
Escape from New York is available to watch, stream, download and buy, rent on demand at Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Vudu, Amazon, Google Play and YouTube VOD. Some platforms allow you to rent Escape from New York for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 39 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.1  (156,436)
  • Metascore