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Tuesday, August 21, 2012
C. Thomas Howell, John Rhys-Davies, Anora Lyn
Andrea Gyertson Nasfell
Husband and wife doctors Paul and Kim Jordan need a drastic change. Distraught by the inexplicable death of their baby, Paul (C. Thomas Howell) convinces Kim to abandon their American lives and join a medical mission in Thailand. It seems to be just the distraction they need, until the day Paul is kidnapped by human traffickers who need a surgeon to operate on their wounded leader. Kim is left alone in a strange country, trying desperately to find her husband with no proof of what happened. While captive on the gangs' secluded island, Paul is caged with Malcolm Andrews (John Rhys-Davies), an Englishman being held for ransom. With nothing to do but talk, the two men quickly clash over philosophy, as Malcolm relies on a bold faith in God and Paul believes no god would allow these evils to happen in the world. Paul takes another hit when he finds his patient's condition much worse than he can handle on his own in such primitive conditions. With his value to the criminals plummeting, the only hope for both he and Malcolm is to plot their own escape. They must trust each other with their very lives in order to outwit the traffickers and make a run for freedom.
Escape (2012) | Review
Paradise Lost and Regained
The couple arrives in Thailand, and after touring some of the sites, Kim (Anora Lyn) tells Paul (C. Thomas Howell - Jack's Father in The Amazing Spider Man, Tyler in E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial), "This is Paradise." But what may look like Paradise on the outside may cloak the reality underneath. After the doctors are introduced to the clinic, they get a clearer glimpse of what they have signed up for. The equipment is not what they are used to; neither are the struggles and misfortunes of their patients. Kim confides in her husband that she was wrong: "This is not Paradise."
She didn't realize how intimately the Hell behind what looked like Heaven would touch her life.
Paul's compassion for the people is used against him. He is tricked into a vulnerable position, and is taken captive by human traffickers. Fortunately for him, they need him alive in order to try to save their leader, who is near death from a gunshot wound. There he meets a retired businessman, Malcolm (John Rys-Davies - Sallah from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and Gimli the Dwarf in the Lord of the Rings trilogy), who has married a local woman, and is being held for ransom.
Macolm's faith in the Lord is evident in his positive attitude, singing (very badly) songs of the faith, and at one point reciting the list of "things which cannot separate us from the love of God" from Romans Chapter 8. Paul responds, "I'd say that being closed up in an animal cage is about as separate as it gets."
Meanwhile, Kim has begun to wonder where her husband is, and is entangled in plenty of red tape trying to get the authorities to listen to her. Through the process, she meets Malcolm's wife, Michelle (newcomer Celicia Arnold), neither knowing their husbands have been captured by the same group. Kim finally meets up with a representative from the American Embassy, and is told they are looking for her husband, but that there is nothing more Kim can do. Kim replies, "We're doctors. We fix things. There's always more we can do." The representative responds, "Until there isn't."
We often try to do something, anything, to get ourselves out of our private Hell. We work, and struggle, and sometimes fight and claw our way, trying to get out. But sometimes all we can really do is stop and and let the experts take over. Kim had done all she could to investigate her husband's disappearance and get the attention of the authorities. Now it was time to let them do what only they could do. Now it was time to put the results in God's hands.
There are still a few twists to come in the movie which I will not give away. People will take risks and make sacrifices in order to secure Paul's release. The result will not be what everyone wants, but the denouement will show that good has come out of what has happened.
Escape may not have the production values you are used to in a blockbuster film, but it tells a good story, and is worth your consideration. It's definitely better than many made-for-TV movies I've viewed. Escape becomes available today on video. For more information, you can visit the film's official webpage, where you can watch the trailer. Follow this link: Escape.
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