Monday, September 10, 2012


Our heroes, Guy Pearce and Maggie Grace.
The gleefully bad Lockout is determined to have a retro look and feel. The film aspires to be a politically incorrect and formulaic B-movie. There is no need to rack your brain over its plot holes. The simple story takes place in the future, when almost everything is dimly lit. While by no means a good film, Lockout is still somewhat entertaining.

While investigating the conditions of a space prison (yes, a prison in space), the president's daughter Emilie (Maggie Grace) finds herself in the middle of a breakout. Officials send "Snow" (Guy Pearce), who is on his way to jail or worse after being framed for murder. At least one convict (Joseph Gilgun, clearly having a good time) is inexplicably obsessed with Emilie after spending a few minutes talking to her. Vincent Regan adds a little gravitas as the criminal ringleader Alex, but he, like the rest of these characters, is undeveloped.

Predictably, Snow and Emilie clash. Snow is sarcastic and tough as nails, as well as disrespectful and whiny. He is not particularly likable, but he is funny and has an edge. In the face of certain death, Emilie finds it strangely necessary to try to get to know him. Her character doesn't make sense, but at least she shows a little gumption and compassion. (Grace's expressions are somewhat puzzling, though, since she looks as though she's trying not to laugh through most of the film. Or perhaps she's just unable to hide her attraction to Snow?)

Snow treats her pretty roughly in the name of getting in and out, but their tension is one of the best things about the movie. Much of the acting is quite bad, including Peter Stormare's as the man who insists Snow's guilty. Lennie James is decent as a coworker supposedly on Snow's side, though he, along with everyone else, doesn't really seem to care about the potential deaths of hundreds. The end appears to be a half-baked afterthought, but a lot here is. Sitll, if you want to watch a movie late at night that doesn't take itself too seriously, Lockout isn't necessarily a bad choice.

Milk does a body good. One of our villains, Joseph Gilgun.

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