Dir: James Mather & Stephen St. Leger
A hard Scottish accent can indeed be quite intimidating!
‘Lockout’ was originally titled ‘MS One: Maximum Security’, and that title is far more descriptive for a film that’s about a maximum security prison, wait for it… in space!
When first daughter Emilie (Taken’s Maggie Grace) visits the penitentiary, things inevitably go awry, and she’s taken hostage by the rampaging prisoners, led by two Scottish brothers (including ‘Misfits’ Joseph Gilgun), who are suffering the side-effects of being kept in stasis, which include delusions and psychosis. However simultaneously, CIA agent Snow (Guy Pearce) is being accused on Earth of going rogue and is unconstitutionally convicted of treason and sentenced to serve his time in the space prison. However, when the situation in space is discovered, Snow is set the challenge of rescuing the President’s daughter, with the bonus that the one man who could possibly prove his innocence is up there too.
Guy Pearce is pretty good in his role, he does the tough-guy act pretty well, and delivers a huge amount of sarcastic one-liners too. The film was criticised hugely for being very derivative of others, most especially ‘Escape from New York’ and Escape from L.A.’ Personally, I haven’t seen them yet, so that didn’t bother me too much, though just from the little I know of those Snake Plissken films I saw that link too.
My issue is that it was too predictable. I know it’s a popcorn action film, but a few little surprises would have been nice. Remember that this was written and produced by Luc Besson of ‘Fifth Element‘ fame, and I praised that film for giving a superbly inventive view of the future. However, though this is set little more than half a century in the future, I think a few bits of extra futurism would have been nice, rather than just space prisons that I saw the other day in Men In Black 3 (not bothered blogging so I’ll mention it), and guns that were hardly developed from what there are now and we all know that weapons are one of the first things to get money put into their development.
Anyhoo, it will please people who like action just for that sake, but for someone who watches a lot of sci-fi and yearns for originality, it wasn’t one I’d rush to see again.