Film: The Escapist

The Escapist is a Prison Break drama film set in a British prison and revolving around Frank Perry, one of the oldest inmates who has long since given up hope. When he finds out his beloved daughter has become a drug addict and is near death following an overdose, he decides he’s to break free. He formulates a plan to escape, and the twin narratives of planning the escape and the actual escape are played simultaneously.

The film was very well-received despite limited release, and it finally gives the incredible Brian Cox a starring role. The rest of the cast consists mostly of that guys, including Damien Lewis, Joseph Fiennes, Dominic Cooper, Liam Cunningham,Seu Jorge and Steven Mackintosh.


The Escapist provides examples of the following:

  • The Alcatraz: A very creepy, very bizarre seemingly underground prison.
  • Ax-Crazy: Tony. Lenny Drake borders on this at times.
  • Bad Ass: Multiple members of the group; Lenny Drake and his genius machinations, and Frank Perry and his "Reason You Suck" Speech to Rizza and his Heroic Sacrifice, are stand-out examples.
  • Bittersweet Ending Frank is killed by Rizza for protecting Lacey; Brodie, Lenny Drake, and Viv all die horribly in the escape, but Lacey escapes safely and Frank is reunited with his daughter in the afterlife.
  • Break the Cutie: Tony eventually succeeds at this in regards to Lacey, to both parties' detriment.
  • Death Equals Redemption Frank gives his life so that Lacey and the others can escape, and is reunited, presumably in heaven, with his daughter after seeing Lacey to freedom.
  • Depraved Homosexual: Tony is particularly nasty example, possibly with a side of ephebophilia.
  • Dying Dream: Although it’s debatable. Frank clearly dies, but it’s implied that the escape was real and at the very least Lacey escaped.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Frank
  • Final Speech: Frank gives one to Rizza. Rizza is quite surprised by this and none too pleased.
  • Great Escape: Frank orchestrates one of these.
  • Hellhole Prison: The atmosphere is terrifying gloomy and claustrophobic, and the guards are dangerously apathetic, leaving total control of the prison to Rizza and Tony.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Frank
  • Interrupted Suicide: Lacey via Frank.
  • Ironic Echo: “You have one thing going for you, Frank. You’re too old to die young.”
    • "Stare at something else."
  • The Old Convict: Frank himself.
  • Prison Rape: Threatened at, and later carried out on, Lacey, leading to him attempting suicide.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Lacey gives one to Tony by means of a chair and a pillow.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Lacey. Imagine that first you’re forced to parade naked to your cell while hundreds of convicts leer at you, and then you’re stalked by the untouchable brother of the prison kingpin, and the guards actually herd you into an area to be raped by the aforementioned brother. And then imagine that after all of this you wake up in your cell later on only to find said rapist on top of you about to do it again. You then snap and and kill him and as a result become a near-catatonic suicidal mess.
  • Tunnel King: Brodie has past experience as a smuggler.
  • Secret Stab Wound: Frank seems not to pay his any mind, at least not until the timelines converge.
  • Smug Snake: Both Rizza and Tony
  • Villainous Breakdown: Rizza has one when he realizes he's lost his power over both Lacey and Frank, as well as losing his brother, and his whole facade as king of the prison is threatened.
  • What Are You in For? : Fully averted in that nobody asks each other what they're in for, due to having been in prison together for a while, and no one asks Lacey what he was sentenced for when he arrives.