“Escape the Field” is an amateur take on the concept used in “Predators” (2010), and before that, “The Condemned” (2007), where a group of people are thrown into a kill zone of some kind and only the toughest make it out alive. In “Predators,” players will have to survive on a planet on which they were brought by predators to sharpen their skills. Their prized possession is their life itself. Similarly in “The Condemned,” ten condemned criminals are brought to a deserted island and given a chance to win their freedom by fighting an illegal game to death. In “Escape the Field” also, the characters have been dropped in the middle of a cornfield for “experimental memory treatments,” among other things, for some unknown intent. While the plot of the film is straightforward, it fails to give rise to the feelings that it should have given. Such kinds of films always carry a thrill that comes from not knowing what lies ahead. The fear of uncertainty should be given a lot of attention, especially in an unknown location, to the point where it becomes palpable. As viewers, we have already been subjected to this palpability via the films we mentioned above. This has allowed us to set our expectations really high. Unfortunately, “Escape the Field” falls short for our expectations.
What Happens In ‘Escape The Field’ Film?
Sam, Tyler, Ryan, Denise, Ethan, and Cameron find themselves in the middle of a cornfield without any knowledge of how they ended up in such an unusual place. They each have an object with them that is yet to find its purpose. As they follow Ethan’s object, i.e., a compass, they slowly realize that they are not alone. There is a creature that is out there with them. Without food and water, it gets more and more difficult for them to figure out a way to escape the place.
After Denise is killed by the creature, the others find a small faucet on the ground and realize that Ethan’s compass had led them to it. This means that all the other objects are clues as well to show them their escape route. They also find a tree that has a map of the cornfield carved on it. There is also a metal scarecrow with a shirt on that has the map on it too. They begin to follow the clues. Meanwhile, the creature is also tracking them. They all get wounded or killed, and ultimately, only Sam and Tyler are able to reach the spot where they have to use the final two objects (clues). Will they be able to escape the Field? Or will they fall prey to the creature?
Escaping The Experiment
Most of the people who have seen the film will be able to tell that the whole film is based on an experiment, especially after it is revealed that none of the people have any idea how they got there (thanks to “Predators” again). And sure enough, Denise reveals how she has analysed and collated data for the Pentagon (basically the government) that can only come from activities like the ones they are all a part of. Cameron further explains how such experiments are used for selective memory erasure, chemical therapy, micro-implants, and other such tests. But the problem with the plot lies in the fact that neither do we get to see the tests explicitly as such nor do we get any version of what the motive of the experiment really is. Had there been a more clear objective for the people to accomplish, or if the clues had led them to something more concrete, the film would have been more effective in its intention. Another thing that was left out, which could have made things much more interesting, was the red serum that Ryan was injected with, and so was the creature that was initially a man. From the behavior of the man, it seemed the serum had heightened his strengths as well as his basic instincts. If only we had more information about the serum, perhaps even a glimpse of how they were made, it would have been interesting. And speaking of heightened instincts, getting lost in a cornfield that has no apparent end does call for a heightened awareness that, for example, comes from getting lost in the wild. There is also insecurity when a person, already lost in the jungle, meets another person whom he or she has never met in life before. While the insecurity is there in “Escape the Field,” heightened awareness is completely missing. With such an effective setting, the motif of awareness could have been used to better establish the film’s thriller vibe. The feeling of being alone yet being watched, the rustle of leaves , the presence of a real creature, and more such things; all these do subtly add charm to a thriller.
By not showing anything that we could relate to with what’s happening, the film takes our imagination for granted. It is one thing to let the audience imagine something on their own accord and something entirely different to maneuver their thoughts in a particular direction. “Escape the Field” does exactly what it means, i.e., shows if any of the test subjects make it through the test. And nothing more.
‘Escape The Field’ Ending Explained: What Happens To Sam And Tyler?
At the end of the film, we see that only Sam and Tyler have the highest chances of making it out of the cornfield alive. All the others are dead. This is when Tyler, too, is killed by the wild man while Sam manages to flee the spot. However, the man brings her down and stabs her as well, but Sam also manages to light him up in flames. She then falls to the ground unconscious. Within a few seconds, agents in protective suits arrive and take her. In the background, we hear a voice that talks about the initiation of Phase 2 and the activation of Zone 4. This means that what we saw is only a part of a much larger test. Perhaps Sam will be taken to a different zone and tested in a different environment.
Here it seems that the mention of “all subjects” means that there are others like Sam, who have become the sole survivors in their own tests, and are now being taken to Phase 2. So it is all a part of a bigger plan, whatever that is. But none of it affects us as we didn’t really get the kick that we expected from Phase 1. So Phase 2 becomes ineffective, even for Sam.