Tales from the Crypt Episode 84: Escape

General Information

Director: Peter MacDonald

Writers: A L Katz and Gilbert Adler

Cast: Martin Kemp, Nickolas Grace, Nick Reding, Roy Dotrice, John Kassir, Al Hunter Ashton, Lucy Bayler, Chris Armstrong, Bill Weston, and Murray McArthur

Composer: Nicholas Pike

Air Date: 5/17/1996

 

Overview

Near the end of World War II, Lieutenant Luger (Martin Kemp)—a German prisoner in a British POW camp—decides to betray his comrades in exchange for better living conditions. Thereafter, Lt. Forsyth (Nickolas Grace)—another German officer—enlists the aid of Lt. Luger to escape from the prison facility, with an unforeseen complication.

For its camp-free tone and solemn atmosphere, “Escape” should be commended by fans of the war movie genre. Horror enthusiasts, on the other hand, may chooseTales from the Crypt Escape to forgo this episode due to its lack of gory, scary, and supernatural-themed subject matter.

 

Pros

By forgoing the humor of a typical Tales from the Crypt installment, “Escape” maintains an air of realism that—when accentuated by the straight performances of Martin Kemp and Nickolas Grace—strengthens the credibility of Peter MacDonald’s World War II based narrative.

 

Cons

In addition to being a despicable traitor, Lt. Luger fails to demonstrate a hint of remorse or humanity following his betrayal—much in contrast to Lt. Tales from the Crypt EscapeMartin Kalthrob from season three’s “Yellow,” who, in spite of his cowardly behavior, presents his case in a mildly sympathetic fashion. Viewers will therefore struggle to identify with the protagonist, who comes across as a thoroughly selfish, one-dimensional villain. (In fairness, however, the classic “Deaths-Head Revisited” from The Twilight Zone also features a cartoonish, stereotypical German soldier/Nazi as a main character.)

 

Analysis

Tales from the Crypt EscapeThough hardly original, the twist ending will appeal to those with an appreciation for poetic justice.

 

Concluding Comments

“Escape” is a predictable, underwhelming entry of Tales from the Crypt. Thus, war movie buffs may prefer the aforementioned “Yellow” over this mediocre offering.

 

Overall Quality: 5/10

 

This review is dedicated to original Tales from the Crypt actor Roy Dotrice, who passed away on October 16, 2017 at the age of 94.

 

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