B-movie bumps in the night, with a solid emotional core.
Noel Clarke has come a long way since Kidulthood - his original story about a group of people who aren't over-keen on one another trapped in a storage facility - and duly hunted by an extraterrestrial meanie - managed to find its way to Johannes Roberts, a director with an affinity for all things Alien and generally grisly. The product is a silly, gory and surprisingly engaging slice of low budget slasher science fiction. It requires so many different adjectives to describe it, because it's essentially a loving collage of all the best bits from other movies; fortunately for either your casual horror fan or genre connoisseur, Storage 24 is just original and adrenalin-shot enough to warrant its own existence.
Clarke and Roberts' baby is, thanks to some directorial ingenuity, becomes its own beast. We're allowed the rare pleasure of looking upon the Monster up close and personal from early on - a smart move from Roberts, as the insectoid manhunter isn't especially unique, or even visually that scary (we've seen it all before, kids). However, knowing what this bastard actually looks like does make for very tense and screamy sequences when the damn thing is chasing one of our characters down the dank corridors of the facility, i.e. you'd run like Hell too if you saw that thing behind you.
But it's with the earthbound players where the main strength of Storage 24 lies. The painfully tangled relationships our helpless protagonists find themselves in do ring true amid the ET-gone-bad chaos, and numerous characters unpredictably change motive - but in a way that stays true to their personalities. It makes for a disarmingly honest portrayal of human beings caught in a tight jam.
There's a lot to like about Storage 24; it almost lives up to its ridiculous yet promising premise, and with compelling performances from every member of the likeable cast going through predictable set pieces, it's clearly an avid fan of science fiction and horror and plays all its tropes to its strength. This surprisingly enjoyable slasher flick is having far too much ludicrous fun to care if you are or not.
- Gary Green
Storage 24 is out now.