Advertised Extra: The trailer makes a reasonably big deal about the fact that Liam Neeson is in this movie. He appears for maybe five minutes total.
Asshole Victim: Desperate for cash, John eventually decides to rob a meth lab. A drug lord and a dealer are killed as a result.
Lara is arguably this as well. Although she is completely innocent of the murder of which she is convicted, it's made clear early on in the film that she's not a particularly nice person.
Awesome by Analysis: When you realize how much planning a mere teacher put into his wife's escape, including timing how long it'd take for their pictures to get to bus stations and air ports and leaving a garbage bag of map scraps with misleading photos.
Clear Their Name: Averted Trope: The story makes it perfectly clear that nobody believes Lara is innocent and the only piece of evidence that may give her case reasonable doubt is never found (arguably, no effort was ever made to try and find it, at least not until the last few minutes of the film), so John decides to get her out of prison.
Driven to Suicide: Lara, when she learns no one believes her story about bumping into the murderous junkie, which means no appeal to her case, which then means she'll spend the next 25 years in prison and again when her husband makes the decision to leave their son behind so they can escape. In both cases her attempts fail.
Dynamic Character: In the beginning we see John as a mild-mannered and caring professor and family man. As the movie goes on he becomes a steely-eyed strategist, accumulating all the skills and the cold mentality to pull off a jailbreak.
Damon Pennington: But before you do anything, you have to ask yourself if you can do it. Can you forget about ever seeing your parents again? Can you kill a guard? Leave your kid at a gas station? Push some nice old lady to the ground just because she gets between you and the door? Because to do this thing, that's who you have to become.
Romantic False Lead: Nicole looks like a potential love interest for John, but it doesn't amount to anything.
Unusually Uninteresting Sight: A woman tries to jump off a moving car and her husband tries to hold onto her, making the car skid all over the road and spin like a top, and aside from some swerving and angry honking, nobody on the road seems to care.