Escape by Night was originally released in Great Britain as Clash by Night, which was also the title of the Rupert Croft-Brooke novel on which it was based. Gangster boss Tom Bowman has been arrested and is being transported to prison in a bus containing several innocent "civilians." Bowman's old gang hijacks the bus to rescue their boss, then take refuge in an old barn. The gang holds off the authorities by threatening to torch the barn and all its occupants. The climactic conflagration is predictable, but its outcome isn't.