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Escape (1980)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama  |  20 February 1980 (USA)
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The true story of Dwight Worker, an American who was caught smuggling drugs in Mexico, and sentenced to fortress-like Lecumberri prison where he endured brutal conditions. With the help of ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dwight Worker
Barbara Chilcoate
Jack Branch
Jamie Valdez
Lily Levinson
J.W. White
Jorge Cervera Jr. ...
Louis Giambalvo ...
William Marquez ...
Col. Fuentes
Tina Menard ...
Ernie Fuentes ...
Rick Garcia ...
Commando #1
Bert Santos ...
Commando #2


The true story of Dwight Worker, an American who was caught smuggling drugs in Mexico, and sentenced to fortress-like Lecumberri prison where he endured brutal conditions. With the help of his wife, Barbara, he escaped the prison by disguising himself as a woman. He was the first prisoner to escape Lecumberri since Pancho Villa. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

20 February 1980 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Powerful Real-Life Drama
30 November 2005 | by (Dallas, Texas) – See all my reviews

Returning to the U.S. from a 1973 adventure to South America, Dwight Worker, a young American, was arrested in Mexico City, for smuggling a small amount of drugs. He was sent, without trial, to the dreaded Lecumberri Prison, from which only one person had ever escaped ... Pancho Villa, some sixty years earlier.

The first half of this film describes Workers' ordeal, from the time of his arrest, on through the months and years of his imprisonment, wherein he endures brutal treatment, and false hopes for release from a corrupt system.

Eventually, Worker meets Lily Levinson, a tough, middle aged woman with a heart of gold. Later, he meets Barbara Chilcoate, a young, attractive woman with whom Dwight falls in love. Over a period of time, Barbara and Lily devise an ingenious plan to free Dwight. The film's second half is the implementation of this plan, which is filled with suspense.

"Escape" (1980) is quite good. Its impact lies in its origin as fact. The credible script gets strong support from both casting and acting. Timothy Bottoms is excellent as Dwight. Kay Lenz does a fine job as Barbara. And Colleen Dewhurst, with her gravelly voice, is terrific as Lily. My only complaint with this film is the poor visual quality. The copy I watched was grainy, and had a reddish/orange tint.

Fictional prison escape movies are a dime a dozen, because the stories are so contrived. This story is not contrived. The events really happened. And the cinematic effort to tell the story is of sufficient quality to render an absorbing viewer experience.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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