You go to the cinema, buy your tickets, get your popcorn, find the best seat in the auditorium, and settle in for a fun Saturday night at the movies in hopes of seeing a good, raucous, scare fest.
The lights go down, the previews end, and the film starts. This is one of my favorite moments when I go to the movies, as the film company logo burns on to the screen announcing the beginning of the film. The opening credits begin to roll and I am ready to be enthralled and entertained by a good film.
On this unseasonably warm Saturday night I wanted fun horror. Instead I got Storage 24, a new horror film from the UK that holds the tag line, “Will their first contact be their last?” I tell you what; my first contact with this film will certainly be my last!
Storage 24 tells the yawn inducing story of a group of people being locked inside a storage facility after a plane crashes in the middle of London and the city is on lockdown.
As we hoped, there is something else in the facility with them and it is not human. It begins to pick them off one by one.
Basically, that’s it. There is not much more that happens and what does occur is void of any originality whatsoever. The middle parts of the film try to add some much needed character drama between a recently broken up couple and the man she chose over her former mate, who is, of course, locked inside with them.
The cast, made up of newcomers, looks unsure of what they are supposed to be doing from moment to moment. They could have used some serious direction but instead they mull around the darkness looking as if they were waiting for a cue.
In the darkness there is a monster and there is no explainable reason for him to be inside a storage facility. The design of the creature is a brutal rip off of the great Stan Winston’s design for Predator and a little of his Pumpkinhead thrown in to try and take away from the audience saying, “Hey! That is just a rip off of the Predator!” It is too bad that there is not even originality in the design of the creature itself.
The utter lack of originality is the one thing you can count on throughout the film. The characters are underwritten and the action just pulls from other films, mostly Ridley Scott’s classic Alien, which this film desperately wants to be. There are so many scenes that have been designed to “Alien up” the movie that it has about a 30 minute stretch which becomes a blatant rip off of Scott’s sci-fi/horror classic.
See the men go through the air ducts while the creature is closing in on them while the other horrified characters watch helplessly. Watch as the main female, after being berated, finally stands up to the men. Marvel at the low angles, tight close ups, and slick lighting as the characters move through the darkness trying to avoid the monster.
It sounds as if I just described a large part of Alien but it is just the major unoriginality of the film I am reviewing here. As I have said many times, tip your hat to your favorite films, but don’t just rip them off. Find your own voice young filmmakers!
Storage 24 is not good in the least. Frankly there is neither one moment nor performance that I can reference in the positive. The best thing I can say about the film is that it comes in at just under 90 minutes instead of the advertised 95 minutes.
Storage 24 is a horror film without horror, tension, atmosphere, or characters to root for. In a film where there is something not human, in the dark, killing people one by one I would think that these things would be a prerequisite for the screenplay.