Escape From Death Block 13 – Film Review

Escape From Death Block 13 is an American action film written and directed by Gary Jones and stars Robert Bronzi.

Mick (Robert Bronzi) travels to America from Hungary to settle some debts from his brother’s former employer, who he died while working on the job. However, the company’s owner, Renda (Nicholas Turturro) has no interest in paying Mick‘s family back and sets his employers onto Mick, which doesn’t end well as he attacks them in self-defense.

Unfortunately for Mick, he is framed and is sent to the death block in Pleasant Hill Penitentiary, which is considered one of the most dangerous prisons in the world. For example, if a fight breaks out between two of the prisoners, the guards will take bets over who will win. The prisoners are also made to do gruelling work in the prison yard that they are physically shouldn’t do alone, such as lifting heavy objects that would normally require more than one person. Because Mick can look after himself with his fighting skills, he is approached by a pair of detectives with a secret drug operation within the prison. At first hesitant to help, Mick believes that helping the detectives could shorten his sentence.

If Escape From Death Block 13 feels familiar to you, then you are probably reminded of all the films that it is trying to emulate. Robert Bronzi looks a lot like the late actor Charles Bronson and the plot for this film is similar to the films that he used to star in. Sadly, Robert Bronzi just doesn’t have enough charisma or personality to be a leading man. In fact, he isn’t very expressive and comes across as emotionless, so he isn’t exactly the sort of character that you care about and want to see succeed. Disappointingly, none of the actors bring much to the table, as they are either cringe-worthy old men or they are big men that get into fist fights rather than having any dialogue. The familiar yet weak plot makes Escape From Death Block 13 really difficult to get through and it will feel like time is moving very slowly.

The visual effects aren’t very good to look at either. The fake backdrops and sets are hard to look at and take seriously without wanting to laugh at how terrible, cheap and they appear. Actually, the whole film really reminded me of a typical badly made-for-TV movie based on the writing, acting and effects.

If you are a fan of action films from the seventies and eighties and you would like to see a modern take on those films, then Escape From Death Block 13 might be worth watching. But in my opinion, you are better off with just watching the classics.

Escape From Death Block 13 is now available on Video on Demand in Australia.

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