It’s a daring mix of genres, but it works, as though Noah Baumbach had been called in to do a rewrite on “How to Steal a Million.” Steven Knight wrote and directed one of the best (“Locke”) and worst (“Serenity”) films of the last decade, but when he is good, he is very, very good, and his skillful handing of relationships and claustrophobia and corporate-speak is matched by Liman’s ability to bring all of this to fruition.
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Imagine the worst night of two-hander theatre that you were ever subjected to in the Before Times. Then add in 12 too many scenes of (accurate but annoying) glitchy Zoom calls featuring other famous actors. And then multiply that by the number of minutes you’d be better served scrolling through the back catalogue of your streaming service of choice.
A head-smashingly redundant waste of time, talent, energy and resources, a shockingly early yet entirely convincing contender for worst film of the year.
Hathaway and Ejiofor seem excited to play edgier, less nice people than they often get the chance to, and the early scenes of them locking horns in their claustrophobic (if posh) flat generate enough energy to carry the movie almost all the way over the finish line.
COVID-19 serves as a fitting backdrop for an amiable romp about the freedoms we take for granted, and the confines that dictated our lives long before we were forced to spend them at home.
A lo-fi treatment of a high-concept crime rom-com deficient in sexual chemistry, laughs and suspense, this is a grating stunt in which actors who ought to know better, led by Anne Hathaway and Chiwetel Ejiofor, play synthetically movie-ish characters meant to tickle us with the all-too-real trials of the COVID era. If you still think frozen screens and kids disrupting Zoom business calls are a hoot, it's all yours.
Locked Down is a crushing miscalculation on every level that should’ve stayed locked up.
If you’re looking for two hours of not-quite-escape, the solipsism of Locked Down has real charm and entertainment value, not least in its willingness to be a movie about adults — and for adults. If the specter of a global pandemic haunts the material more than it enriches, well, it’s not alone, is it?
The actors take your mind off things when they can: I like the way Hathaway jabs her elbow at the elevator buttons for punctuation, and the ardent commitment to language Ejiofor brings to his character’s public poetry readings. But a movie shouldn’t rely on Hathaway and Ejiofor to shell-game your attention away from the movie itself.
Certainly, the actors seem to be having a good time, even if the people they’re playing are utterly miserable. Hathaway’s comic timing has become a marvel in recent years, but Ejiofor, too, exults in the chance to throw off his usual gravity.