Opening 19 Jun 2014
“Right now nothing’s a joke.” On the eve of a career-making project, site manager Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) takes off for London. The car phone is his lifeline, and noose. Bethan’s (Olivia Colman, voice) stunned, then reproachful, yet Ivan insists he has to “take care of my fuck-up”; their teenage sons just want dad home. Pressures mount: The daybreak delivery of 6,500 tons of C6 concrete must be monitored: his assistant Donal (Andrew Scott, voice) needs firm guidance; his boss Gareth (Ben Daniels, voice) has to tell Chicago, and Katrina’s (Ruth Wilson, voice) clingy. During the drive from Scotland to London Ivan fluctuates from gut-determination and unfailing integrity to resigned remorse while confronting his past, until relieved by a new day dawning.
Trapped in the car, Tom Hardy’s facial nuances depicting a life laid bare are powerful, mesmerizing. Steven Knight’s screenplay and direction is engrossing, suspenseful. The entire cast captures their characters emotional essence. Haris Zambarloukos mounted three cameras on a car, and in eight nights accumulated incredible footage; Justine Wright’s judicious editing and Dickon Hinchliffe’s music match the tempo and pace of the tension, traffic, and psychological drama. Leaving the car, we know we have seen something special reminding us of what good filmmaking is all about. Steven Knight joins a growing list of young independent filmmakers creating new genres that move cinematic art into excitingly unconventional territory. (Marinell Haegelin)