The operation of Escape Room in some ways is similar to that of Dungeons and Dragons. I explain better.
Adapt a literary work rather than comics, means already have in hand a story and characters. Certainly, the scriptwriters can decide to revolutionize everything, but they start to conceive their story with a remarkable narrative solidity.
Dungeons and Dragons has no story, it’s the people who create them. Just like this example, the Escape Room activity has no story, but it is the participants who create what we will see on stage. It will always be new, always different and with infinite nuances that are never the same.
This consideration, however, should also make us reflect on how easy it is to create from these starting elements, something that does not work because the medium is different or for many other reasons. “Escape Room: Tournament of champions” is the sequel to “Escape Room”, which we must talk about for a moment before proceeding with the analysis of the film in analysis.
The first chapter
“Escape Room”, released in 2019, was one of those successes comparable to some films of the well-known production company BlumHouse. With a budget of 9 million, the film collected 155 million worldwide, becoming a total success. Critics didn’t like it, but audiences loved it. “Escape Room” is about six people, six survivors, who for different reasons find themselves playing the famous activity that is the protagonist of the film. If at first everything seems normal, when one of the six participants dies the others will understand that it is not a game but a kidnapping where only one survives.
That was a film about trauma, how it resurfaces and how luck in some cases and character in others, make a difference. The human being in this film is told honestly, with its sympathetic and ruthless qualities at the same time. If the critics have rejected it is because, theoretically, the script does not work in the resolution and at some junctures.
That said, “Escape Room” entertained just fine and made a silly and unoriginal political point. Some interesting ideas were there. The main characters in that first chapter were Ben and Zoey. That being said, we can finally discuss the movie under analysis: “Escape Room: Tournament of champions”, directed like the previous chapter by Adam Robitel.
“Escape Room: Tournament of Champions”
Also filmed in Hungary, Escape Room 2 takes the concept of the previous film and expands its scope, sometimes forgetting the holes in the script. Although the first chapter was also far-fetched in many ways, kept a glimmer of suspension of disbelief. Tournament Of Champions, however, is no longer interested in doing so, but stands to the viewer as a film about the conflict between Zoey and the terrorist apparatus of Minos.
They are the adversaries, as in this sequel the issue is personal. This tale also has participants and Escape Rooms, the only difference is that all of them are champions, that is, they have triumphed in different places and times. Hence the reason for the film’s title. What happens if you put champions who have already beaten other participants, to compete against each other? Sadistic villainy is again expressed of course, but in this case there are even crazier improbable twists.
A good cue that makes its way into the narrative, concerns the rooms. If in the previous film every challenge, every room, were built only to be difficult and divisive, in “Escape Room: Tournament Of Champions” this element also becomes narrative. For the viewer there is no longer the surprise of knowing who will die, but also to discover the story of those rooms, all of which have a growing story. This twist will be revealed in the last room, making us analysts understand that actually the film resembles a very famous saga: “Final Destination”.
“Final Destination” is also a series built on the probability of events that will have to happen sooner or later. Also in that case there is a group of people with traumas, secrets, who should work together to save themselves.
This second chapter unfortunately does not have that dose of discovery of the first, in fact the mystery of the rooms and the skyscraper vanishes. The protagonists of Tournament Of Champions are captured but there are really too many forcings not to think that it is really impossible. Suspension of disbelief for fantasy and so much other cinema, like the action thriller in this case, is a very fragile and important issue. Just going too far or taking another route is enough to distort the whole context.
Tournament Of Champions unfortunately wanted to overdo it and suffered the consequences. In the first chapter there was this invisible cue of skyscrapers in New York, or structures all more or less the same from the outside of which you do not know anything about the functionality, what they do inside that plant. You can walk into it and find out it’s empty, or it houses various sectors or even they build death traps in it.
With an estimated budget of $15 million, the second installment of Escape Room grosses about $51 million, declaring itself a very relative success and far from that of the last chapter. Moreover, there is still no rumor of a third chapter, which would probably conclude Zoey‘s adventure. Tournament of Champions ends with a cliffhanger pure and hard, so the idea of a further sequel there is definitely. If it will be produced the producers will have to decide, but something must be changed otherwise the third chapter will be a total flop.
“Escape Room: Tournament Of Champions” unfortunately tries to exploit again the idea of the first chapter, but does not add enough novelty and interesting ideas, indeed, the final inserts a series of events so improbable that ends up being ridiculous. If this goliardic purpose would have been better exploited as in Final Destination, maybe we would have had more fun, instead in the film in analysis it just seems a giant stretch.
Tournament Of Champions is a movie that will surely entertain you, since the rooms work well and have their own narrative coherence. Another worse feature of this chapter is also the complicity of the characters, since in the first chapter all of them were basically stereotypes while in the last chapter they don’t even have a connotation, except for Ben and Zoey.
Tournament Of Champions is a movie that will surely entertain you, since the rooms work well and have their own narrative coherence. Another worse feature of this chapter is also the complicity of the characters, since in the first chapter all of them were basically stereotypes while in the last chapter they don't even have a connotation, except for Ben and Zoey.