The Film: Storage 24 (2012)
The Principles: Noel Clarke (Mickey from the Rose era of Doctor Who!), Colin O’Donoghue, Antonia Campbell-Hughes, Laura Haddock, Alex Price and Jamie Thomas King. Directed by Johannes Roberts.
The Premise: A plane crash dumps a pissed off alien into a storage unit with a trapped group of estranged friends. They get stalked awhile and scream a bunch.
Is it any good? It’s not good if you look at the word in its general sense, but it was competently made and was fun to look at some of the time. Director Johannes Roberts does an excellent job of building the tension and found a great location with the storage unit the entire film is set in, but he simply doesn’t have the slightest idea how to direct action. When the alien attacks and our characters have to fight it off, it just looks like a bunch of actors stage fighting with a dude in a rubber suit, which I suppose is the hallmark of the genre, but here it kills the movie dead. It’s one of the few times where I actually wanted to leave the fireworks factory and go back to the quiet street outside.
The actors acquit themselves nicely without anyone being much of a standout, but the script lets them down on such a fundamental level that Daniel Day Lewis might have stumbled through it. The character motivations shift on a dime and, even though we have a sense of their history and relationships, their actions are inexplicable much of the time. Again, sometimes when you sit down to watch a monster movie you can overlook most of the important shit like “logic”, “motivations” or consistency”, but when a character goes from good to evil in the matter of seconds for no better reason than “this movie needs to be nine minutes longer,” then your movie might be garbage.
Most of the time, I can look past the terrible shit inherent in the genre if the movie packs in a few good scares and has a somewhat decent Big Bad, but Storage 24 not only doesn’t have a single frightening moment in its 88 minute running time, but the design for the creature is redundant and laughable. It steals pieces from a dozen different classic movie monsters, but just ends up looking like the illegitimate child of The Creature From the Black Lagoon and Doug Jones. When it moves, it only gets worse! You can completely imagine three guys with poles making the thing look taller and running it down long hallways while trying it to give it the lumbering gate of the Wolfman mixed with Sloth from The Goonies.
The terrible characterizations mixed with the miserable creature design, abysmal CG and the complete lack of scares makes Storage 24 a pretty horrible misfire. There are a few moments where the direction and score elevate it, but it’s all, like humanity’s resistance, futile.
Is it worth a look? Only if you’re a monster movie completest or feel like ruthlessly mocking something other than your children for an hour and a half. The film also shamelessly sets up a sequel, so maybe you could just catch that?
Random anecdotes: I fell asleep three times watching this movie, but I always rewound it to where I drifted off and continued the slog. I DID IT FOR YOU!
The film had ADR work done in three different countries and it’s easily the worst ADR I’ve seen since Birdemic.
Cinematic soulmates: The Creature From the Black Lagoon, Alien, Independence Day, Shaun of the Dead.