If your reading this hoping I am reviewing the totally underrated Sly Stallone classic ‘Lock Up’ – then you are going to be sorely disappointed – Sorry. However, if your reading this wondering whether to go and see the space action thriller called ‘Lockout’ – well then step right up, this is your lucky day.

Firstly, there is a vicious rumour going round calling this movie ‘Die Hard in Space’. Now, I don’t know who started this rumour, probably the Studio Exec’s so as to get the numbers up, but I can today confirm to you that this is not true.  Lockout is a lot of things, but that is definitely not one of them.

Secondly, I have to say I was surprised to see Guy Pearce associated with this… but then I remembered ‘The Time Machine’ and everything returned to normal.

Now – to the movie! Every time I write that I feel like writing bat mobile instead…

Next time I think I will stick to Escape from New York!

Lockout is basically much more Escape from New York than it is Die Hard. Why? Well because the presidents daughter is stuck on a satellite in space, that happens to be a prison, and the prisoners happen to be rioting. Seeing the similarities? Well it doesn’t stop there. The people in charge decide to send a criminal to go rescue her. Yup, its basically the same movie in space…

I’m not really trying to criticise this kind of movie. I have a lot of respect to the people who make these movies when it is done right, i.e. Die Hard. But, it is so so easy to do wrong. And in this case, I’d probably say Lockout got it wrong. To be fair to Guy Pearce, he was the main saving grace of this film. His delivery of some of the quippy dialogue was very well done and I laughed a loud at him more than once. He did the ‘Kurt Russell’ role well, and he was believable in his rugged self, and I actually liked his character a lot.

But then there is the stuff that is wrong with this movie.

Maybe Guy Pierce should lend his Time Machine to the people who made this film so they can go back to the late 80s/early 90s and ask the people there how its done. Hell you don’t even need to do that, Sly is still making movies – ask him. Or even better – ask Arnold! Am I saying the action movies of the 80s/90s were flawless – Hell no! What I am saying is they were so much better done. Its ironic really that in a time when special effects are what they are today, movies are some how worse off. Take ‘Total Recall’ – a classic in its genre. It is everything Lockout wants to be – funny, cheeky, cheesy, not to be taken seriously action nonsense. Yet they are remaking it, and I can guarantee you now – it will fail, just in the same way Lockout has.

There is just no sheen to Lockout. Why? Well its hard to put my finger on it, but there is. Say your making your own marinara sauce. And you keep experimenting until one day, its perfect. Everybody raves about it and you think you’ve mastered it. Then when you come to make it again, you taste it and it’s just not right. You don’t know why, and you don’t know how – but you can feel it, there is just something missing. That’s the predicament with Lockout. These movies have been made so many times before. And Lockout really did have all the ingredients. They had a good leading man – and he actually did a good job. They had the damsel in distress/love interest and they had the vile villains who you wanted to see suffer. They even had a bizarre futuristic setting. But it still didn’t work.

Maybe I’m just shallow and I lost it a bit when they cut Maggie Grace’s hair and put shit on it to help her blend in… maybe then my subconscious said, “Nahh… I’m out.” Or maybe it was just too cheesy, and was just trying too hard. Its hard to say.

What I will say is that if you want to see a ‘leave your brain at the door’ movie than you’ll probably enjoy it. But it just didn’t work on any level for me. Maybe we should just leave these kind of movies in the 90s, where they belong.

Overall, an average action film that could, and should have been so much more, especially with Luc Besson at the helm.

5/10

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Comments
  1. Wait for it on TV or at least for the DVD in the “sale” area! 😀

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