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Storage 24
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Storage 24 (2012)

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Plot Summary:

"London is in chaos. A military cargo plane has crashed leaving its highly classified contents strewn across the city. Completely unaware London is in lockdown, Charlie (Clarke) and Shelley (Campbell-Hughs) accompanied by best friends Mark (O'Donoghue) and Nikki (Haddock) are at Storage 24 dividing up their possessions after a recent break up."

Review by
Ryan McDonald
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Review Date: 03 July 2013 My Rating: out of 5


A plane crashes in London, unleashing the alien monster it was transporting. Noel Clarke is one of several people stuck in a storage facility, and of course the alien has found its way inside. Clarke is also bitter about a recent break up, and unfortunately his ex (Antonia Campbell-Hughes) is stuck in there with him, along with best pal Colin O’Donoghue. Ned Dennehy turns up in a lively role as an eccentric man whose marital woes have seen him take refuge in the storage facility.

Making a movie, especially one with special FX mustn’t be terribly easy on a modest budget, and us critics probably need to be mindful of that. However, filmmakers also need to bear in mind that if you make a crap film, you’ve made a crap film, no matter how admirable your intentions might’ve been. So here it is that I’ve come to discuss this genre piece from co-writer/director Johannes Roberts, aided and abetted by co-writers Davie Fairbanks (who also has a role), Marc Small, and Noel Clarke (the latter of whom wrote the story and stars in the piece). Although not nearly as bad as “District 9” or “Attack the Block” (both of which I’m the only non-fan of in existence, apparently), one could also say the same about un-anesthetised dental surgery. Actually, I feel a little bad flogging it because apparently it was a huge financial flop too, and that must’ve sucked for all involved. But I have to be honest, nonetheless. It’s not very good.

It starts really promisingly, with quite an unsettling opening, pretty much hitting the ground running too. I was immediately intrigued. The handheld camerawork by Tim Sidell is surprisingly damn good, and the film looks a bit more expensive than it probably was. Flickering lights, lots of shots of long corridors, and close-ups of eyeballs are the order of the day here. If anything, the film is too well-lit, making it not especially scary, though it’s kinda striking in a deliberately bland, “One Hour Photo” kinda way. Sidell’s work and Roberts’ direction most certainly are not at fault here. It’s the cast and script that bring this crashing to a halt, after an intriguing set-up. It ends up going nowhere, and in the meantime you’re stranded with a bunch of mumbly talkers, seemingly typical of British youth- irritating to no end (Apparently ADR was done in three separate countries, which might explain things too). Aside from Ned Dennehy, they’re all boring and seemingly on downers, as the film takes forever to get to the part where people are bumped off one-by-one. I lost patience relatively quickly. Noel Clarke (who co-wrote, directed, and co-starred in the mediocre “4,3,2,1”), meanwhile, always comes across as singularly unappealing to me, and here he’s sadly our lead actor.

The monster, meanwhile, is an amalgam of every famous movie monster of the 1980s. Not an incompetent piece of FX work in the slightest, just uninspired. I’m sorry, but when a toy poodle provides the film’s best moments, you know you’re watching a bit of a dud.

Technically competent, but surely that’s nowhere near enough. I really needed characters to latch on to, at the very least. No, I didn’t much like this one at all.

Reviewer: Steven Davies @braindeadsteve
Location:Luton, UK
Review Date: 14 November 2012 My Rating: out of 5

So with gypsy curses, demonic hoodies and naked female monsters under his belt its time for director Johannes Roberts to turn his attentions to sci-fi horror. 'Storage 24' is the tale of a group of people trapped inside one of those 24 hour storage facilities in London following a plane crash with a difference. The military cargo plane was carrying a mysterious alien life form which soon ends up in the warehouse along with our group made up of a whole mixture of twisted relationships. It's down to them to survive the night and escape the lockup in one piece as they're about to be joined by the drooling blood-thirsty monster.

'Storage 24' is written and produced by rising talent Noel Clarke who also stars as Charlie. Both him and his best friend Mark (Colin O'Donoghue) pop over to the warehouse to pick up junk that the recently dumped Charlie must retrieve following, his much discussed, breakup with his ex-girlfriend Shelley (played by Antonia Campbell-Hughes). Due to bad timing however Charlie bumps into his ex and her friends in the storage room and find themselves fighting side by side to fend off the out of this world invader.

The dialogue keeps the action ticking along successfully although is often swarmed by conversations about 'the relationship' and then which ultimately turns on the character twists which in all honesty you could smell coming a mile off. More often than not the relationship sub-plot pulled the attention away from the impending doom of having their limbs torn apart from a unworldly monster with more teeth than the Osmonds. And it drags its audience with it.

The script is let down a great deal by some of the filmmaking choices. The creature, for what its worth, isn't treated with enough respect on screen and certain shot selections really let it down when attempting to secure a solid scare. There's an overuse of close-up shots particularly when its comes to the creature sequences which do nothing more than trigger a couple of minor jump moments as opposed to what could have been shock inducing fear. Aside from the close-ups the majority of interior shots almost fall apart due to being over lit. Obviously the internal workings of the storage facility would be well lit with numerous fluorescent light fixtures; however, this means that when the creature is crawling through the corridors of the structure it really is all on show. And the creature isn't top notch enough to deal with it.

The creature isn't unlike anything we've seen before and more an accumulation of other ideas and influences from sci-fi past. Although it's a great effort for a British horror of this scale and fits in nicely enough with the overall tone. The script is perfectly intelligible for the type of movie its aiming to be and appears to be well footed in what its trying to achieve. Sadly, however, 'Storage 24' does little to bring anything new to the genre and the creature itself certainly isn't particularly original nor overly scary. It's certain lacking gives it its charm but also flings it kicking and screaming straight into the mini-mart budget bin. It's a fun Friday night in flick but nothing more. I'd recommend going out and renting 'Attack the Block' instead.

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