Escape from L.A. [1996]

Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Fifteen years after John Carpenter squandered a great idea on a mediocre movie (Escape from New York), he does it again--this time on the Left Coast. Kurt Russell is back as the terminally cynical one-eyed action hero Snake Plissken who, this time, has been coerced into saving the world in Los Angeles. It's 2013 and L.A. is now an island maximum security prison off the coast of California. Snake has 10 hours to find a doomsday weapon that's fallen into the hands of revolutionaries before he dies of a virus with which he's been injected. But the action is clumsy and unimaginative: lots of shootouts and very little suspense. Even the bad guys aren't particularly inventive; only Pam Grier, as a transsexual gang leader, strikes any sparks. Russell growls his way through the role but can only blame himself: He cowrote the script with Carpenter. --Marshall Fine

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