Locked Down A Tragic Covid Casualty

Locked Down(HBO)

Starring Anne Hathaway and Chiwetel Ejiofor

Directed  by  Doug Liman

Rating: * ½ 

Pandering to the pandemic has started big-time.A  film written and made entirely  during and revolving around the Lockdown is like  making a baby  just because there is  a cradle in  the guest room. Lockdown is  born out of a place of  anxiety,not love. It shows.

Two of  the most charismatic actors the American Anne Hathaway and British Chiwetel Ejioforget together for what looks like  a pretext to  promote the London departmental store Harrods. That this exasperating rom-com celebrating the yawn-sambandh between two  such  watchable  actors is written  by Steven Knight  who wrote  2019’s  worst  reviewed  film Serenity(which too starred the  gorgeous Hathaway) comes as  no surprise. 

Locked Down is  a mess that  cannot be explained away by the circumstances in which it was written  and directed. Who asked these  people to get  resourceful at a time when the world shut down the enterprising  spirit? This is  a one-note hastily written heist story  about Linda  and  Paxton whose marriage is  on the rocks. Paxton wants  nothing more than to  get on his two-wheeler in the garage and revv down the  roads  of London. Since  he can’t he, goes out on the streets and recites T S Eliot’s poem and spars with his boss(Ben Kingsley, in one the many home-bound cameos)  on video conference.

This film is written purely by numbers.  If  Ejiofor has Ben Kingsley for  his boss, Hathaway  must have Ben Stiller. If Kinsley is deadpan funny,  Stiller is  the same. If Hathaway  gets five funny lines in a  scene, her co-star must  equal that  score. The film’s  bland  servility to the  rom-com rules is very difficult to digest.

 The  last  20 minutes moves to Harrods  for hasty heist   episode that at least offers us the  solace of  some new characters , not to mention a corny homage to American author Edgar Allen Poe.  Watching Hathaway and  Ejiofor sparring for nearly two  hours over such significant  subjects as , ‘Should he be allowed to bake bread to break the lockdown boredom?’  and ‘Should she tolerate  his meddlesome  brother and  his  wife on   video-con just because there  is no better diversion?’ is as difficult  as being indulgent  towards this  film just because  it was  made during the lockdown.

Go bake  a bread  or speak to your brother’s family if you have extra time. Spare  yourself the  ennui  of  watching this film.

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