Loud, longing to be rated R and at times just plain silly, “Lockdown” left me wanting to see another “Transporter” flick.
Luc Besson, who has made quite a name for himself with the “Transporter” franchise (not in small part because of Jason Statham’s talents as an action star), was among the screenwriters for this science-fiction actioner. There’s a lot of action but not much going on character-wise. It’s as violent and suggestive as a PG-13 movie can be without providing characters who are memorable or sympathetic.
The show starts with Guy Pearce (“The Hurt Locker”) as Snow, who, in the year 2079, is being interrogated. He is a former CIA operative who is wrongly accused of murder.
Meanwhile, Emilie (Maggie Grace, “Taken”), the daughter of the president of the United States, is visiting a maximum-security prison called MS-1. It’s a kind of prison ship that stays aloft while its dangerous inmates are housed in a frozen state. This idea of “warehousing” doesn’t sit well with Emilie, and she wants to better understand rumors that the process is mentally and physically debilitating for the prisoners.
When Emilie is taken hostage, Snow can either rescue her or be sent to prison himself. Someone who possibly can clear him of the charges against him is being held on MS-1, so he has an agenda of his own.
Sometimes it’s interesting to watch the action, but the characters leave a lot to be desired. Emilie is the quintessential damsel in distress, and Snow is the snarky, hard-as-nails antihero who means business and doesn’t see any reason to be personable as he goes about his assignment — sort of “Die Hard” in outer space. It isn’t the fault of the actors that the characters are vapid.
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I did like the cool twist at the end, which comes rushing at you but does work and is clever enough that it deserves to be part of another movie entirely.
Honestly, this is the kind of movie that generally goes straight to DVD. I think it showed up on the big screen because Pearce and Grace are recognizable for their work in other actioners, so the studio probably figured “Lockout” had a built-in audience for that all-important opening weekend.
You might consider taking this in as a matinee or rental, but it won’t stay locked in your memory for long.