Lowdown: Die Hard in space.
Most action films coming out of Hollywood’s way nowadays are pretty crappy. As in, most stuff coming out of Hollywood is pretty crappy, but the action genre suffers even more given its over reliance on digital effects is deemed to compensate for rising levels of stupidity. Under such circumstances, how can an action movie acquire itself an edge? Well, the answer offered by Lockout is through the use of an actor. A proper actor, one that can actually act. Guy Pearce.
Don’t expect much sense in this futuristic sci-fi action movie. Pearce’s character Snow is some sort of a government agent that falls victim to some sort of a double cross plot that has him arrested and tortured by the government. In parallel, we learn of a prison set in earth orbit where the worst criminals are brought to serve their sentences under cryogenic freezing (raising the question of what their punishment is given that as far as they are concerned, they wake up to freedom a minute after being frozen).
We also learn the President’s sexy daughter (Maggie Grace) is arriving to inspect the prison. Things go wrong through her thick security guards and quickly enough the formerly frozen prisoners take over their flying fortress. Now, the only hope for our lady in distress is one sole infiltrator (guess who?). Coincidentally enough, that hero of ours also finds out the person who can help set things right for him and his original quest resides at the prison, too.
As I said, don’t expect much sense. What you should expect is Die Hard style action set in space and often reminiscent of Outland. There are some fine digital effects here, that's for sure.
What you should also expect are lots of jokes that are truly well delivered by Pearce. And what you receive is proper acting from the lead action hero, a quality very much absent from the genre since the day the blockbuster was invented.
Me, I also liked the anti authority / don't trust the government theme that prevails throughout. In these days when Bradley Manning is standing to trial, Lockout's message rings truer than before.
Overall: Mix it all up and Lockout turned out not at all bad. Silly, yet fine entertainment worth 3 out of 5 stars.