Film review: ‘No Escape’

Family vacation: Wilson and Bell try to flee.

One and a half stars

No Escape Owen Wilson, Lake Bell, Pierce Brosnan. Directed by John Erick Dowdle. Rated R. Now playing.

At one time, it might have made sense for Owen Wilson to demonstrate his range by starring in a movie like the grimy thriller No Escape. But the Wilson of goofy comedies and low-key character parts is very out of place in No Escape, as is his co-star, fellow comedy performer and character actor Lake Bell. Wilson and Bell play an American married couple who’ve just moved with their two young daughters to an unnamed country in Southeast Asia. Coincidentally, they arrive hours before an armed coup begins, and they find themselves targeted by hordes of faceless revolutionaries who might as well be zombies for all the humanity the movie gives them. Good thing they previously met a dissolute Brit (Pierce Brosnan, having fun with the terrible material) with a secret background in espionage. The action that follows is mostly laughable when it isn’t tedious or insulting, both to the region it’s skittish about representing and to the audience that’s expected to buy into this nonsense.

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