In between the 1997-set events of John Carpenter's Escape from New York and the 2013-set events of his sequel Escape from L.A., a lot of things happened. A massive earthquake hit, sending Los Angeles into the sea to function as its own island. Then we elected a new president who promptly appointed himself president for life and made a bunch of moral laws that outlawed, among other things, profanity, tobacco, alcohol, red meat, and the public expression of any views that didn't fit into his aggressively Christian agenda. Anyone who broke these laws would be sent to the island of Los Angeles, now a filthy, dangerous prison island.
However, they did accurately predict the 2013 Lakers season.
In 2013, the president's daughter, Utopia, gets brainwashed by a dangerous revolutionary and taken to Los Angeles. The president decides to send Snake Plissken, a very cool guy with an eye patch, into LA to retrieve her. Snake would, in exchange, be granted immunity for all of his many, many crimes. As if Snake needed MORE incentive, he gets injected with a deadly poison that will kill him within 10 hours unless he gets the antidote, which the president will only give him if he rescues Utopia. There's also a remote control that can render all of the world completely powerless, and everyone's trying to get their hands on it.
(To sum it up, the president's daughter has been kidnapped and Snake is the only man for the job to save her. I swear to God, '90s action movies have hands down the most convoluted and inefficient plots ever.)