6.8/10
15,644
52 user 62 critic

The Escapist (2008)

Trailer
1:38 | Trailer

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Frank Perry is an institutionalized convict fourteen years into a life sentence without parole. When his estranged daughter falls ill, he is determined to make peace with her before it's ... See full summary »

Director:

Rupert Wyatt
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brian Cox ... Frank Perry
Damian Lewis ... Rizza
Joseph Fiennes ... Lenny Drake
Seu Jorge ... Viv Batista
Liam Cunningham ... Brodie
Dominic Cooper ... Lacey
Steven Mackintosh ... Tony
Ned Dennehy ... Jumpy Con
Vinnie McCabe Vinnie McCabe ... Sam (as Vincent McCabe)
Jack Walsh ... Sikes
Frank O'Sullivan Frank O'Sullivan ... Hedges
Stephen Farrelly ... Two Ton (as Sheamus O'Shaunessy)
Domhnall O'Donoghue Domhnall O'Donoghue ... Mary
George Seremba George Seremba ... Stan
Eleanor McLynn Eleanor McLynn ... Frank's Daughter
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Storyline

Frank Perry is an institutionalized convict fourteen years into a life sentence without parole. When his estranged daughter falls ill, he is determined to make peace with her before it's too late. He develops an ingenious escape plan, and recruits a dysfunctional band of escapists - misfits with unique skills required for their daring plan and united by desire to escape their hell hole of an existence. Much of the action takes place within the tunnels, sewers and underground rivers of subterranean London. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

5 Men. 4 Walls. 1 Plan.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK | Ireland

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 2008 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

El escapista See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,075, 5 April 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$13,023, 19 April 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Frank Perry was written specifically for Brian Cox by director Rupert Wyatt, who had worked with Cox before and wanted to work with him again. When Cox refused a supporting role in a movie Wyatt offered him and challenged him to write him a good leading role, Wyatt did exactly that. See more »

Goofs

During the scene in which Perry meets his wife, and he looks around the doorway, behind him is a sign stating the prison regulations. However, about three quarters of the way down the list, 'prison' is erroneously spelled 'prision'. See more »

Quotes

Frank Perry: I'm free now. I'm old now.
Rizza: Free? You've got an imagination.
Frank Perry: Imagination is what protects us. It's what keeps us alive. You're still living, but less and less. Inside, you own this place. You run things. You're the king. But look around you, what do you see? It's all pretend. It's all made up. You own nothing. Nothing except sorrows and bars and rusty metal staircases. You'll never live, because outside you don't exist. No one will remember you. No one.
Rizza: You behave.
Frank Perry: Behaving myself is what's kept...
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Connections

Remade as The Escapist See more »

Soundtracks

The Butcher Boy
Performed by Brian Cox, 2007
(Traditional)
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User Reviews

 
Intricate prisoner delivers more with each viewing.
15 December 2009 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

On the surface it looked like being a standard prison break out picture. But come the end one can't help admiring the construction of the film and marvel at how the makers used the cons to con the audience in a wholly satisfying way. The set-up is simple enough, Brian Cox's old lag Frank Perry is mortified to hear that his daughter is mixed up with heavy drugs and death is perhaps one more hit away from her. Desperate to get out of prison to save her, he hatches a plan for escape and enlists some other like minded souls, each with their own special "skill" to see it through. What follows is a twinned inter-cut tale as we witness the escape attempt and the prior motivations leading up to said escape. All building towards what one can rightly expect to be a run of the mill ending so evident in most prison based movies......

Directed by Rupert Wyatt, The Escapist thrives on claustrophobic atmosphere and grim prison reality to set the wheels in motion. Filmed at Kilmainham Jail in Dublin, this is a dank place, overcrowded and paint peeling from every wall; and of course there's an array of unsavoury characters just waiting to use violence or sexual proclivities to feather their respective nest. This place alone is reason enough for escape attempts, let alone the reasons put forward for our escaping protagonists. The audio on offer also enhances the mood, the clanking of metal or the rumbling of shuffling boots land in the ear drum with almost tenacious glee. There's also no overdose on dialogue, no filler conversations serving no purpose to the crux of the tale.

The cast are (prison) uniformly strong, led by the great and weathered Cox, the roll call of escapees also contains earthy Liam Cunningham, a buffed up Joseph Fiennes, a youthfully fraught Dominic Cooper and black magic gusto from Seu Jorge. While within these walls menace comes from a weaselly Steven Mackintosh and the excellently chilling Damian Lewis as nick daddy Rizza. All in all, The Escapist, if you pardon the pun, is a break out movie two fold. Not just as a story, but also in offering up something different in the genre it belongs too. Much like Brian Cox himself, The Escapist is something of a British treasure. 9/10


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