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Movie Reviews

[Greenpoint Film Festival] ‘Locked Alone’ review: Haunted apartment story with some small tweaks

More than just a gimmick. But is that enough?

Starting over your life in a new city is never an easy feat. When you are beginning alone by yourself in New York City, things can be even more intimidating. Locked Alone is about a woman named Catherine who is about to do just that. Things immediately take a turn for the strange when Catherine is trapped in her apartment by a mysterious entity.

Locked Alone wastes no time building its story. Catherine is clearly uneasy about being alone. She also begins having strange dreams. It is not long before she cannot escape her apartment and strange writing appears on the mirror. Director Yung-Jen Yang does a great job setting a mood. Catherine may be uneasy, but she clearly wants to start her new life. She seems exasperated by her mom’s constant calls, yet there is a sense she wants her there with her. In other words, she is just like any other person.

Locked Alone makes maximum use of minimal location. The vast majority of the movie takes place in the confines of an apartment. Yang uses sound and light to essentially change the setting. There are some plot threads that are not fully developed, but it never bores the audience. The film manages to stay fresh despite the same locations being used.

[Greenpoint Film Festival] 'Locked Alone' review: Haunted apartment story with some small tweaks

The horror aspects of the film are effective, if predictable. The normal jump scares, shadowy figures, and giant SOS sign all make an appearance. This means that there is never any true tension. The premise keeps the audience wondering what happening, but this is more of a product of the situation than the actual story. There are sexually charged moments, but Locked Alone is a fairly straight forward scary movie.

Being trapped in an apartment is scary enough in itself. Adding a sexually aggressive ghost does not help matters. Locked Alone is horror movie that adds interesting twists to the basic ghost story. Everything is set up to where the main character will just run through the apartment screaming for an hour and a half. Locked Alone attempts to add some different wrinkles. Ultimately, it is another basic horror movie.

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