[[quoteright:303:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/EscapeLA_1312.jpg]]

->'''President:''' ''If you go to Los Angeles, and come back with that black box and put it in my hand, you'll be given a full pardon for every moral crime you've committed in the United States.''
->'''Snake Plissken:''' ''[[ContinuityNod Sounds familiar]].''

Snake Plissken (Creator/KurtRussell) is back in ''Escape From L.A'', this 1996 sequel to Creator/JohnCarpenter's ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork''.

America has become even more {{dystopia}}n than it was in the earlier film, having been taken over by a [[ChurchMilitant theocratic]] [[TheFundamentalist fundamentalist]] [[StrawCharacter Christian]] President (Cliff Robertson). An airplane escape pod has crash landed into the [[WretchedHive penal colony/no man's land/landfill/roach motel]] that is UsefulNotes/LosAngeles [[AfterTheEnd post-The Big One]]. It had ThePresidentsDaughter Utopia (A. J. Langer) on it, and now she has sided with [[BigBad Cuervo Jones]], taking the film's MacGuffin super weapon with her. The President drafts Snake into retrieving said MacGuffin and, if necessary, eliminating his daughter. His reward, should he succeed, will be a full pardon and the antidote to a virus that has been injected into him.

And so he enters the fortified and barbwired city of Los Angeles, a prison with no guards and precious little order. He makes his way through the slums (it's all slums), he gains and loses allies and...

The ending to this film is incredibly defiant and shocking for an action film -- even for people for whom ItWasHisSled.
----
!!'''This film provides examples of:'''

* AfterTheEnd
* TheAlcatraz[=/=]PenalColony: Los Angeles, which has been separated from the mainland US by a massive earthquake and is now a prison for those deemed "unfit" to live in the new theocratic America. A Great Wall is built along the shoreline and the United States Police Force is encamped along it preventing anyone from escaping back to the US.
* AllThereIsToKnowAboutTheCryingGame
* AwesomeButImpractical: Surfing on a Tsunami through the dilapidated ruins of L.A. chasing a Cadillac speeding on a high road...and catching it.
* BadassBiker: Snake when he rides a motorcycle.
* BadassLongcoat: Snake wears it.
* BigBadEnsemble: The American President is a religious fascist who turned his country into a police state and is willing to destroy entire countries if necessary to maintain his supremacy. [[NotSoDifferent Meanwhile]], Cuervo Jones runs the largest gang in Los Angeles and has united Latin America under the Shining Path to invade the United States to get that power himself.
* BigBlackout: [[spoiler: The ending has this happening all over the world due to Snake. This is treated as a good thing as it allows humanity to restart.]]
* BoringYetPractical: Snake is given an array of weapons and gadgets going into LA. Among them is a simple box of matches, which Molloy tells him that he never knows when they may come in handy. He uses them twice: Once to destroy a car and the other to light up at the end of the film.
* BoxedCrook: As in the [[Film/EscapeFromNewYork previous film.]]
* CaliforniaCollapse: a portion of the California coast has become separated from the mainland by a quake that flooded San Fernando Valley.
* CallBack
-->'''Taslima''': What are you doing here in L.A?
-->'''Snake''': Dying.
-->'''Taslima''': But first you have to find something, right?
* ChekhovsGun:
** [[spoiler: The holo-cam]], to an amazing degree of awesome.
** To a lesser extent, Snake getting his hand cut by the guard walking by him. It's revealed only a few minutes later what it was.
** Also the matches.
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: Eddie switches sides constantly.
* CoDragons: Both Cdr. Malloy and Lt. Brazen fill this role for the President.
* CombatPragmatist: "Nobody draws until this hits the ground."
* CoolGuns: The "Coreburner" assault rifle plus Snake's own [[GunsAkimbo pair]] of [[RevolversAreJustBetter revolvers]].
* CrapsackWorld: Los Angeles, reduced to an lawless dog-eat-dog hellhole, is described by one of its residents as "the only free zone left in the world" and something of a [[InfernalParadise dark paradise]] by Snake himself when compared to [[DayOfTheJackboot the police state of America]] and the rest of the world in general.
* CutTheJuice: What the Sword of Damocles does.
* DeadlyGame: ''Basketball'' becomes a life-or-death situation in this movie.
* DeadpanSnarker: It's probably safe to say Snake's even ''more'' of a snarker in this one.
* DelusionsOfGrandeur: The President. During the climax, [[spoiler: when he sentences his daughter to be executed]], he corrupts one of the Bible's most recognized verses, putting himself in The Almighty's place (of course, given that he's President For Life of a theocratic dictatorship, it'd probably be surprising if he ''didn't'' develop a God complex).
-->'''President:''' [[spoiler: "For he so loved his country, he gave his only seditious child."]]
-->'''Original Verse:''' "For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten son (...)" [John 3:16]
* DirtyCoward: The President starts freaking out the second things go off-plan, and has to be snapped back to reality by his Dragons.
* {{Dystopia}}
* EvilVersusEvil: Really, the Shining Path and the US Government are absolutely no different in terms of how evil they are; both the President, a fascist fundamentalist, and Cuervo Jones, a vicious power-hungry terrorist, want the "Sword of Damocles" for their own evil purpose. And Snake, naturally, is trapped between 'em.
* ExactTimeToFailure: Subverted. Snake's watch reaches zero seconds after he demands the cure for the Plutoxin 7 virus. [[spoiler: Luckily, it turns out that Plutoxin 7 is just a fast, hard-hitting case of the flu.]]
* ExpandedStatesOfAmerica: UsefulNotes/{{Bangkok}}, UsefulNotes/{{Thailand}} (where Snake has been at some point between 1997 and 2013) is mentioned as being United States territory.
* ExpectingSomeoneTaller: A running joke with characters meeting Snake in the film.
* EyeScream: Snake ''very'' narrowly averts this. Since it happened to him [[EyepatchOfPower once already]], it would've been a real bummer.
* FanService: Snake's short, but memorable ShirtlessScene when he changes his clothes.
* FateWorseThanDeath: Deportation to LA is considered this, to the point that on-site executions are offered for those who would prefer death.
* ForcedPrizeFight: In a variation, Snake has to win a steel-cage basketball game in order to escape. The danger coming from the fact that if he misses a shot or lets time run out, he gets shot to pieces.
* FourthWallPsych: "Welcome to the human race!"
* TheFundamentalist: The President, a mixture of RonaldReagan and Jerry Falwell, who has turned America into a theocracy. And for an added joke, he's played by a guy named Robertson.
* GenreSavvy: "That's why the first clip is loaded with blanks."
* AGodAmI: Implied with the President when he corrupts a Bible verse by putting himself in God's place.
* TheGunslinger: Snake has become a Type D in the intervening years.
* {{Hell}}: The opening narration refers to LA as an "island of the damned."
* HellBentForLeather: Snake's old worn out leather coat makes a return, until he trades up for a BadassLongcoat. In fact, during the opening incarceration shot, Snake's entire wardrobe makes a return since Russel informed Carpenter that he still had his original outfit from ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork'' hanging in his closet.
* HeroicNeutral: Snake, obviously.
* HumanResources: The plastic surgery freaks, who must regularly kidnap prisoners and harvest them for body parts in order to keep themselves alive.
* IJustWantToBeFree: Arguably Snakes entire motivation. He just wants to get away and be left alone to his own devices.
* [[IHaveNoSon I Have No Daughter :]] The president made it clear that he disowned his daughter. In fact, he was annoyed that his daughter was alive, and [[OffingTheOffspring prompted to execute her.]]
* IllegalReligion: The new extreme right wing President who takes over the United States outlaws all religions other than Christianity as well as atheism. It is punishable by death through deportation to the hellish, crime-ridden Los Angeles Penitentiary Island. Taslima, one of the inhabitants, tells Snake that she was an American Muslim before she was shipped off to L.A.
* ImprobableAimingSkills: Snake and a few other instances in the movie.
* InsistentTerminology / DoNotCallMePaul: In both ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork'' and ''Escape from LA'', the U.S. government is on a LastNameBasis with protagonist Snake Plissken, to which he consistently replies, "Call me Snake". However, during the respective climaxes of both movies, when one of the government's men finally does call him Snake, he reverses his previous attitude with the reply "The name's Plissken".
* InTheBack: Subverted. A Neo-Nazi skinhead attempts to throw a knife into Snake's back as he's walking away. Snake turns around and riddles him with bullets before continuing on his path.
* InvadedStatesOfAmerica: A united, [[DirtyCommunists Shining Path]]-led Latin America is on the verge of invading the US.
* IronicEcho: "Catches on quick doesn't s/he?"
* ItsAllAboutMe: Snake cannot be persuaded to give a shit about anything but his own interests. Considering there is [[BlackAndGrayMorality no particularly good side]] for him to be on, one can hardly blame him. This applies to the President, too.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Snake was more or less this since ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork''. However in this movie is a bit less anti-heroic as you would expect - it is shown when he spares The President's daughter life when he had the order to kill her on sight. Although that may be equally due to Snake's utter contempt for the men who ordered him to do it.
* KillSat: The Sword of Damocles.
* LighterAndSofter: ''L.A.'' has little of the grittiness of ''New York'', and Snake is more of an ActionHero.
* LockAndLoadMontage
* MacGuffin: The controller, [[spoiler:which activates the "Sword Of Damocles" defense system, an EMP cannon designed to destroy enemy nation's weaponry]].
* MexicoCalledTheyWantTexasBack: The Shining Path has taken over all of Latin America and is about to launch an invasion of the United States. They want a bit more than Texas...
* ANaziByAnyOtherName: The US President, a politician who takes advantage of a depressed, war-torn country to attain absolute power, and then proceeds to eliminate any and all "undesirables" from his new regime. He even uses the term, "Final Solution", near the end.
* NeverBringAKnifeToAFistFight: The final battle between Snake and Cuervo has Cuervo use a knife against Snake.
* NinetiesAntihero: Snake exemplifies this. He was even this [[Film/EscapeFromNewYork nine years before the nineties began]], making him an UrExample.
* NoodleIncident: Whatever happened in Cleveland.
* NotInThisForYourRevolution: Snake absolutely despises the authorities who literally have to coerce him into working for them with a tailor-made "kill you in 10 hours" virus in his body or he'd just bail on them in a heartbeat.
* NumberOfTheBeast: "666" is the world code for the controller for the Sword of Damocles.
* OhCrap: Snake, upon realizing what the cut on his hand is. [[spoiler: And to a even bigger extent when the government officers realize that Snake can be within a half miles radius, and knows the world code.]]
* OnlySaneMan: Snake appears like this, especially at the end.
* OppressiveStatesOfAmerica: While ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork'' was set in a crime-ridden FallenStatesOfAmerica setting, this movie turns America into a full-on PoliceState.
* PresidentEvil: Hoo, boy.
* ThePresidentsDaughter: Utopia
* ThePurge: In the opening narration, it's stated that the President's first act is Directive 17 - Americans who are found "unfit" to live in the new, "moral" America are stripped of their citizenship, deported to L.A. and may never come back. Don't want to go to L.A.? There's always the electric chair.
* TheQuincyPunk
* ReligiousAndMythologicalThemeNaming: The Sword of Damocles
* SacrificialLamb: [[spoiler:Taslima]]'s character starts out by looking like [[spoiler:Snake]]'s potential love interest and moral guidance. Gets shot in the back quite suddenly for no particular reason other than showing just how bleak the future is.
* SinisterMinister: The US President is part this and part PresidentEvil.
* SleevesAreForWimps: Once again, Snake (at least when he isn't wearing his BadassLongcoat).
* SociopathicHero: If Snake gives even a fraction of a damn about the people who die helping him, he certainly doesn't show it. He does seem to be shocked and upset at [[spoiler: Taslima]]'s death, perhaps because she's about the only person who hasn't either [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder turned on him]] or [[ManipulativeBastard outright manipulated him for their own ends]].
* StateSec: The ''United States Police Force'', who despite their name is well armed and equipped.
* StrappedToAnOperatingTable: The plastic surgery freaks ''really'' want Snake's body...
* StrawmanPolitical: And how.
* TakeAThirdOption: [[spoiler: Rather than side with a Fascist theocracy government or a Brutal Communist government, Snake shuts off the entire world.]]
* TakingYouWithMe: [[spoiler: Cuervo is about to shoot the chopper that Snake, Hershe, Eddie, and Utopia are escaping in with a rocket. He gets shot by Eddie but still manages to get the rocket off before dying.]]
* TheTheocracy: The PresidentEvil turns the United States into a virtual theocracy. He makes Christianity mandatory country-wide and religious heterodoxy punishable by death, while enforcing a set of new moral laws for the 'new America'.
* ThoseWackyNazis: When Snake is looking for the original soldier sent into Los Angeles to retrieve the Sword of Damocles, he runs into a bunch of Neo-Nazis using the guy's corpse for target practice. When they try to kill Snake over an insult he shoots one of them with his machine gun looking nearly bored.
* TitleDrop: During the opening narration.
--> The United States Police Force, like an army, is encamped along the shoreline, making any escape from LA impossible.
* TooAwesomeToUse: Snake's revolvers. In the two scenes he demands them back (when being sent into L.A. and when escaping from the Surgeon General of Beverly Hills), he is carrying other guns (The Coreburner issued to him by the government and the Colt 1911 he takes from the Surgeon General), which he resorts to using first. Even after losing the Coreburner, he divests a mook of his shotgun and uses that. He only gets to use his revolvers once, showing off his ImprobableAimingSkills and loses them when captured.
* TooDumbToLive: The bald knife thrower attempts to throw a knife at Snake when he walks away from him. [[MoreDakka Yeah, good look with that.]]
* TookALevelInBadass: Snake since ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork''. In that film, he was an ex-Green Beret with pretty decent combat skills. In this one, he's able to achieve [[TheGunslinger Man With No Name style quickdrawing]], shoot rifles and shotguns [[FiringOneHanded one handed]] from a motorcycle with no significant effects from recoil, take a round to the leg from a [[HandCannon Desert Eagle]] and still walk with [[OnlyAFleshWound only a limp]]. This while being infected with the Plutoxin 7 virus (granted, it turns out to be [[spoiler: the flu]], but still).
* TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture: Carried over from the first film.
* UncannyValley: [[invoked]] The plastic surgery addicts. This one is [[IntendedAudienceReaction intentional]] though. Especially creepy is the Surgeon General of Beverly Hills.
* UsedFuture: But only in LA.
* WhatBeautifulEyes: The Surgeon General of Beverly Hills is simply ''mesmerized'' by Snake's eye...
* YouHaveGotToBeKiddingMe: "Map To The Stars" Eddie's reaction upon seeing Snake following him on the tsunami.
----