If you're not Interested in Locke within the first ten Minutes, give it five more. After that don't expect anything to change in the next Seventy Five.
Locke might initially seem like a Buried or 127 hours type joint but in reality Locke is even more extreme than those. The basic idea is you as the viewer are following Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy of Sucker Punch frame... not that Sucker Punch) on his couple hour drive from work to the hospital. Not only that but its only the highway parts of the drive that we see, as you would expect the scenery is all basically the same two angles and the same highway with blue and yellow car lights. This I find is actually a pretty interesting idea, but like a real long drive it's hard not to tune out a bit.
Locke is having a bad day and before I get into why I will have to say the basic plot of this movie is not crazy or anything but it is the entire content of the hour and a half so if you are going to watch the movie despite the review I would say stop reading. Alright so Locke is driving to a hospital because he is having a baby, a baby with a woman who is not his wife. Also at the same time the biggest deal of his companys history is going down in the morning but he will have to miss it. What you need to understand is dealing with these two separate issues is the entire movie, complications come up with his business and obvious issues happen with his wife. Things you might expect from a move like is are car crash, getting pulled over by the police, other drivers interacting with him, another twist in the progress but none of that happens it's entirely a talk show, the car and locations are pretty inconsequential to the story.
If anyone would be interesting enough to pull this off, Tom Hardy is a great choice and he is interesting to hear talk. The acting is good and believable, he plays a real guy and despite a few not so subtle father issues he is kinda boring like a real guy. The movie is all phone conversations and he is a very popular guy for this drive, there is no downtime between phone calls, the instant one is over someone else is calling often on hold while one is happening. Either he is on the phone or the movie has a timelapse for the worlds shortest time lapse over what must be a couple minutes so we can get to the next phone call. I found myself almost wanting some quiet reflection scenes or non-phone conversation thoughts, but the ones that are in the film consist of just a few sentences of him talking to himself.
I did find myself getting interested in his story, Locke is a likeable guy even though he has made a couple bad decisions recently and you hope to see how things work out. That makes it all the more defeating when nothing really pans out or much of any character development happens. Most of the interesting character stuff is implied that it happened over the previous few days and we are just seeing the aftermath. On the other end no aftermath is shown either, so the movie is purely just a vertical slice of Locke's life and you just have to imagine how things worked out.
In the end Locke is a good performance piece, but honestly the film just ignores what makes movies an interesting medium. If this was just audio there would be no loss in the experience at all, and for that matter if it was just a few paragraphs of text the interest would stay at about the same level as well. I can't tell how to recomend this movie to someone, it might be amazing to some people but most I feel would probably fall asleep, and sadly wouldn't miss much.
On second thought, there is a sweet Bane reference in the movie... 5 stars.