“Lockout” is one of those films that reeks of cheesiness and ‘70s sci-fi bravado. The plot is thin and full of gaping of holes. But, it strikes me in such a way that at the end of the day—I still liked it. I have such a weak spot for science fiction films that it borders on the absurd.
“Lockout” begins with CIA Agent, Snow (Guy Pierce), being wrongfully accused of murder and brought in by the U.S. Secret Service. He quickly finds himself in prison due to the nature of his crime and governmental station. Meanwhile, the President’s daughter, Emilie (Maggie Grace), is touring the world’s newest in maximum-security prison, MS One. MS One is a cryostasis prison that orbits Earth and bolsters a hundred-percent compliance rate–no escapes, no violence, no disturbances.
Why the president’s daughter is leading this escapade…who knows, but she is there a breach in security occurs, which results in a single prisoner (Joseph Gilgun) escaping.
The particular prisoner in question is crazier than a bedbug, and proceeds to release all the frozen prisoners in a situation that can be best described as: pandemonium. Coincidentally enough his brother (Vincent Regan) is the charismatic leader-type who rallies the rest of the inmates under his leadership to somehow try and devise a plan to free them all.
Flipping back to Earth, the Secret Service decides to use their newest prisoner to his fullest potential by sending him to MS One to rescue the president’s daughter in trade for a full pardon. The rest of the film unfolds with Snow kicking ass in space, and dichotomously enough, the president’s daughter being an idiot in space.
Like I mentioned, the plot is blatantly full of holes and the writing is God-awful; however, the dialogue for Guy Pierce’s character is brilliant. Snow’s one-liners are constant, hilarious, and always fit the tone of the ridiculous situations. Save for Guy Pierce, Lennie James, and Peter Stomare the acting is horrific. The rest of the cast and side-characters have stiff performances that I can’t quite determine are a result of the bad writing or bad acting, but either it translates badly to audiences. I will give special props to Joseph Gilgun though. He plays one hell of a psycho. Definitely on par with Ryan Phillipe in last year’s “Lincoln Lawyer.”
The special effects are wildly inconsistent. I’m not sure if several companies worked on this project, but some scenes are fine and others were simply awful. For example, there is a futuristic motorcycle chase scene that is nauseating and so motion blurred it is ridiculous, but towards the end of the film (in traditional sci-fi fashion) there is a scene in which Snow and Emilie suit-up, jump out of the MS One, and free fall to Earth that is actually pretty cool and unique.
Overall, this is a ‘meh’ movie. If you really enjoy bad, cheesy sci-fi films that would most-likely end up on “Mystery Science Theater 3000” then by all means seek this movie out, but otherwise save it for an immensely boring evening filled with stale popcorn, a box of wine, and a late-night movie channel. Personally, I’m a Mystery Science Theater guy, so “Lockout” will be ungracefully adorning my movie collection at some point in the future, but I can’t with good conscience recommend it.
Are there certain that you know are bad, but just love anyway?
- Watch the First 5 Minutes of LOCKOUT Starring Guy Pearce (collider.com)
- Lockout (thefilmlounge.net)
- Cinema & Film: Film Review: Lockout (coventrytelegraph.net)
- Watch The First Five Minutes Of ‘Lockout,’ In Which Guy Pearce Makes An Outer Space Prison Break (screencrave.com)
- MOVIES: Guy Pearce serves up punches and punchlines in ‘Lockout’ (kitsapsun.com)
- Lockout (moshblog.me.uk)
- One-liners, slapdash science fiction in ‘Lockout’ (arabtimesonline.com)
- Review: One-liners, slapdash sci-fi in ‘Lockout’ (ctv.ca)
- SPINOFF REVIEW: “Lockout” (spinoff.comicbookresources.com)
- Movie Review: Lockout Proves Just How Out of This World Space Prison Really Is (eonline.com)