“He’s the best there is, but he’s a loose cannon.” With that impeccably delivered line, Guy Pearce was built up for sci-fi action hero status in the trailer for the Luc Besson-produced “Lockout.” Europacorp has now followed that statement up with proof, in the form of the film’s first five minutes, and they’re completely implausible, nonsensically plotted, and oh yeah — pretty damned entertaining as well.
The clip starts with a fantastic credit sequence sight gag, then launches us straight into the year 2079, where government agents are interrogating Pearce with brutal force. There’s some straight-faced back and forth about missing information and betrayal, but the real focus here is on spectacle, action, and humor, all of which are present in copious amounts. Wisecracks abound from Pearce, leading quick into fast-paced combat in a hotel room, then before you’re aware the film has shifted to a rooftop chase scene. It’s all absolutely ludicrous, but directors James Mathers and Stephen St. Legers are smart enough to shoot the action in generally clear, focused takes that keep the geography consistent. (Side note: the bloody headshot that appears in the clip below wasn’t in the PG-13 American cut that we saw).
From the previous trailers alone, Guy Pearce’s charisma aside, the film appeared to be a fun yet forgettable amalgam of genre tropes, akin to Neil Marshall‘s completely misguided “Mad Max” tribute, “Doomsday.” “ That said, there is an assured tone and playfulness on display that could deliver a surprise hit.
With Pearce completely chewing the scenery, and a supporting cast that includes Maggie Grace, Peter Stormare, and Vincent Regan, you could do a lot worse when “Lockout opens this weekend, April 13th. [Twitch]