Depending on the culture of your country and the management of your local cinema, intermissions are either the accepted norm or an atypical occurrence reserved for very long films. Depending on the subject matter, the viewer’s connection with a film may be negatively impacted by a break. For comedies, this is probably not an issue; but for films where the drama builds slowly, a sudden pause can change the viewer’s experience considerably.
Steven Knight’s Locke is a film which should be watched uninterrupted. If you are going to watch it at home, I strongly suggest you set yourself up with a viewing experience that is not going to involve the use of the pause button on your remote control. Most bladders should be able to cope with the 85-minute runtime.
Locke is a fascinating experience; probably like no other film you have seen. Steven Knight has written a superb screenplay which places one man in one car for the duration of the story; the ultimate chamber piece. I am not going to tell you how the film is formatted; whether it is one long soliloquy, monologue, or whatever. That is for you to discover; and I hope you do so without the help of a trailer. I promise you that the experience will be more than worth it.
The man in the car is played by Tom Hardy; a name which is still relatively unknown to mass audiences in so much as Locke is the vehicle (excuse the pun) that is probably going to propel him to stardom. However, Hardy has already played key roles in a number of high profile films: he was Eames in Inception (2010), Ricki Tarr in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), Bane in The Dark Knight Rises (2012), and he played the lead role of Bronson (2008) in Nicolas Winding Refn’s superb biopic of the English criminal infamously labelled by the press as the most violent prison inmate in Britain.
In Locke, Hardy shows us his metal, delivering a captivating performance essential for the success of this minimalist one-man show. Steven Knight’s screenplay is immaculate; but it would have all been for nothing had Hardy’s performance not matched the director’s brilliance. The range of emotions Hardy displays are compelling. He is sure to be on many high-profile directors’ wish lists from now on.
Steven Knight has been – up until the release of Locke - a relatively unknown director. He has been writing for TV for a long time. As a screenplay writer he has enjoyed success with Dirty Pretty Things (2002), Amazing Grace (2006), and Eastern Promises (2007). Knight’s greatest commercial success to date, however, has been as one of the creators of the hit TV show, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?.
Once again, I have left you with practically no idea what this film is about - and that’s how we like it here at Wonderful Cinema! Locke is a powerful drama: well written; well acted; well directed. See it.
As always, we recommend you don’t ruin any surprises by reading spoilers or watching trailers. Especially with a film as unique as Locke, I would keep your eagerness in check until you actually sit down to watch it.
Direction: Steven Knight
Screenplay: Steven Knight
Cinematography: Haris Zambarloukos
Editing: Justine Wright
Score: Dickon Hinchliffe
Stars: Tom Hardy