Critics Consensus

No Escape Is Tense but Problematic

Plus, We Are Your Friends is energetic but predictable, and Documentary Now! and Public Morals are Certified Fresh.

by | August 27, 2015 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a family in danger (No Escape, starring Owen Wilson and Pierce Brosnan), an ambitious DJ (We Are Your Friends, starring Zac Efron and Emily Ratajkowski), and a troubled marriage (the faith-based drama War Room). What do the critics have to say?

No Escape (2015) 47%

Can expert craftsmanship redeem problematic material? That’s a question without a definitive answer, but it’s worth considering in the case of No Escape, which critics say is a tense, effective thriller that’s undermined by an ugly strain of xenophobia. Owen Wilson stars as Jack Dwyer, an American businessman who’s recently relocated his family to an unnamed Southeast Asian nation. Soon, however, a political uprising sends the country spiraling into chaos, and Jack must do whatever he can to get his family to safety. The pundits say No Escape delivers an undeniable adrenaline rush, but its depiction of the locals as a teeming, savage mob leaves a bitter aftertaste.

We Are Your Friends (2015) 38%

A sort of Saturday Night Fever for the EDM generation, We Are Your Friends follows an aspiring DJ who draws the attention of a bigshot promoter, falls for the promoter’s girlfriend, and discovers that his friendships change the bigger he gets. The critics say it’s a reasonably energetic yarn with a strong central performance from Zac Efron, but the cliched script and limited character development keep We Are Your Friends from finding a groove.

War Room (2015) 33%

The faith-based drama War Room opens wide this week, but it’s yet to be seen by many critics. Directed by Alex Kendrick (Fireproof, Moms’ Night Out), it’s the story of a family that looks perfect on the surface but is struggling behind the scenes. Guess the Tomatometer!

 What’s Hot on TV

Documentary Now!: Season 1 (2015) 90%

Boasting a talented cast and smart writing, Documentary Now! is a clever send-up of non-fiction filmmaking, though some may find themselves outside the narrow scope of its humor.

Fear the Walking Dead: Season 1 (2015) 77%

Fear the Walking Dead recycles elements of its predecessor, but it’s still moody and engrossing enough to compete with the original.

Public Morals: Season 1 (2015) 82%

Public Morals is a worthy mob crime drama, with a strong leading man and a talented supporting cast counterbalancing cliché-ridden dialogue.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • Chris Geriak

    “Faith-based film” Definitely less than a 20%, maybe even less than a 10% if we’re lucky.

  • Mike Smith

    My guess is ZERO!!!

  • Andrew LaPlant

    War Room = 5% Tomatometer

  • Vits/Vicente Torres

    I didn’t like FIREPROOF, but COURAGEOUS was surprisingly good for a religious movie. That gives me enough trust to watch WAR ROOM. Hey, it can’t be worse than DO YOU BELIEVE?, right? I’ll also watch TURBO KID and Z FOR ZACHARIAH. Oh, and maybe WE ARE YOUR FRIENDS and WHEN ANIMALS DREAM. I’ll skip NO ESCAPE.

    I DVR’d FEAR THE WALKING DEAD and watch it today or tomorrow. Although THE WALKING DEAD is one of my favorites, I’m not that interested in watching a prequel, regardless of whether it will reveal the origin of the virus or not.

  • Tenshi Ippikiookami

    The “No Escape” trailer looked like the finished product. Maybe fun if the bad were aliens, but as a different culture from Earth, a very racist product. Akin to the “I’m an American” that comes so much in the movies. well, September it is

    • BS Button™

      Race and culture are two different things.

      Americans are various races–perhaps the most racially diverse country on the planet.

      • Tenshi Ippikiookami

        I know :). And movies just represent a part of a culture, not the whole of it. I meant “No Escape” was the type of movie that is very short-sighted when it comes to other parts of the world, it doesn’t matter if it’s an American movie or not :).

  • tansysmom

    Xenophobic? Racist? Not really. There are still countries where Americans are unwelcome, often for good reason. Anyone who doesn’t know this hasn’t traveled much. It’s a bad idea to go to those places and an even worse idea to get caught up in one of their civil wars. “No Escape” is somewhat over the top, but not by very much.

Tag Cloud

Spring TV stand-up comedy Vudu renewed TV shows Spike Esquire unscripted Comic Book Writers Guild of America Election WGN 20th Century Fox Best and Worst revenge spy thriller The Purge true crime Cosplay DC streaming service Nat Geo war discovery YouTube Red TIFF Walt Disney Pictures Superheroe 2019 green book Holiday Disney halloween Ghostbusters theme song BBC America Calendar Amazon Prime TV Land Ellie Kemper Paramount Network quibi TCA game of thrones Creative Arts Emmys Pop spinoff Thanksgiving thriller Christmas Extras MTV Film Festival E3 Premiere Dates The CW TV social media Film cults justice league free movies Oscars Fall TV ABC Family cancelled TV shows TBS YouTube Premium Ovation teaser rotten movies we love 2018 festivals Freeform Apple TV Plus Family Shondaland ITV American Society of Cinematographers GIFs Anna Paquin Summer mockumentary Fox News SXSW Turner Classic Movies Lucasfilm Drama AMC Spectrum Originals MCU supernatural Captain marvel YouTube Reality joker kids tv talk Black Mirror romance Showtime Awards Tour diversity Turner Elton John space spanish language television sitcom The Witch San Diego Comic-Con vampires game show anime 2016 Grammys biography Mary Poppins Returns 2017 Character Guide Emmy Nominations Disney+ Disney Plus Trivia cops ratings natural history dragons foreign FOX Awards Video Games comic book Marvel DC Comics Star Wars President Winners Mary Tyler Moore Action Infographic police drama Marvel Television Watching Series See It Skip It HBO cancelled TV series Brie Larson based on movie toy story robots CBS All Access Quiz serial killer Mary poppins hispanic Pixar screenings Disney Plus Mudbound Hallmark GLAAD Bravo Starz Sci-Fi Disney Channel political drama Sundance Now Cartoon Network Rom-Com versus Arrowverse christmas movies travel PBS spider-man Trailer Musicals Netflix Countdown dceu period drama Mindy Kaling Winter TV DirecTV Adult Swim doctor who BBC cats independent Disney streaming service Apple zombies DC Universe cars historical drama Marvel Studios Dark Horse Comics binge crossover comics richard e. Grant Rocky Polls and Games 007 Columbia Pictures hist TCM psycho GoT Pet Sematary VICE Teen Rocketman History OWN RT21 Heroines A24 Schedule Star Trek cartoon Nickelodeon facebook cancelled television nature CNN El Rey award winner USA PaleyFest Super Bowl science fiction USA Network mutant National Geographic Epix Comedy Central LGBT Shudder romantic comedy Pride Month series First Reviews sports cancelled elevated horror cinemax LGBTQ NYCC strong female leads jamie lee curtis children's TV docudrama Year in Review Set visit TLC indie APB cooking Amazon Stephen King politics adventure Peacock Hulu Holidays Western golden globes Valentine's Day zero dark thirty Britbox Chilling Adventures of Sabrina YA Podcast crime drama animated TruTV Mystery CW Seed psychological thriller ABC Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 2020 sequel Syfy Universal talk show Cannes Tarantino HBO Max crime south america First Look disaster Sony Pictures 71st Emmy Awards Marathons Interview 2015 aliens dramedy BET X-Men Toys adaptation canceled TV shows Lifetime Christmas movies crime thriller Opinion Lifetime Acorn TV A&E TV renewals medical drama NBC SDCC Television Academy comiccon Comedy Red Carpet Photos Classic Film Superheroes Country Music RT History Emmys FX Musical video harry potter Amazon Prime Video Hallmark Christmas movies CMT Horror Box Office movies DGA Trophy Talk Reality Competition transformers Fantasy IFC TNT Crunchyroll miniseries Pirates WarnerMedia singing competition boxoffice 24 frames Chernobyl FXX Tumblr witnail Crackle VH1 latino Netflix Christmas movies Paramount Sneak Peek 45 Martial Arts Certified Fresh Food Network The Walking Dead E! ghosts The Arrangement Lionsgate Nominations Sundance casting Biopics IFC Films Animation SundanceTV technology TCA 2017 spain Masterpiece blaxploitation Comics on TV Binge Guide streaming Kids & Family composers Apple TV+ ESPN Women's History Month batman Logo what to watch anthology breaking bad finale CBS 21st Century Fox werewolf Warner Bros. Rock slashers Tomatazos zombie dc canceled MSNBC Song of Ice and Fire New York Comic Con blockbuster