‘Locked Down’ reflects society accurately

HBO Max Original pleasantly surprises


Fair use from Warner Bros Studios.

Ben Sanford

Amidst the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, it is inevitable for quarantine-related movies and TV shows to become produced for the next decade. That being said, “Locked Down” is the first of the bunch to be released, setting high expectations to paint this global experience as realistically as possible. Thankfully, this film expresses the mundane realism of the current state of the world.

“Locked Down” follows Paxton (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and Linda (Anne Hathaway), a married couple living in London on the brink of separation when they are forced into quarantine. Being forced to live in the same house the two deal with their failing marriage, reeling back to addiction, as well as the ongoing pandemic.

Ejiofor and Hathaway have brilliant and convincing chemistry as both actors portray characters struggling with their own version of a midlife crisis. We witness Hathaway’s elegant breakdown as she feels unfulfilled in both her career and marriage. Simultaneously, Ejiofor displays his insecurity as he feels burdened by his tumultuous past. We are able to watch both of these characters experience very different breakdowns in an almost beautiful way.

The cinematography of the movie is unusual and striking, and demonstrates the utter strangeness of the world we are currently living in. Its asymmetrical shots and shaky camera place the viewer directly into the lives of these characters, and make the film feel that much more realistic. Filled with Zoom calls (featuring an all-star cast), frozen screens and the new normal of quarantine, the audience is directly transported into the characters’ lives in almost every scene.

The film comes to a conclusion that feels rooted in reality, wrapping up the film in a conflicted, but satisfying ending. After two hours of time with these characters, we feel like we’ve grown with them. The ambiguity of where our protagonists end up was something that reflected the realities of life.

“Locked Down” surprised me with its ability to accurately depict the reality of the times we are currently living in, and the slew of consequences it can have on people of all different backgrounds and circumstances. I would encourage anyone to check out this HBO Max Original movie if looking to feel understood and encouraged in these trying times.


“Locked Down”: ★★★★☆