WRITTEN BY: Steven Knight
DIRECTED BY: Steven Knight
STARRING: Tom Hardy, Olivia Colman, Ruth Wilson, Andrew Scott
RATING: 3.5 stars

Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) works in construction and is about to embark on a massive concreting project. He is happily married and has two children. But one discretion could see his personal and professional life crumble. Ivan had a one-night stand with a woman who became pregnant. She is about to give birth, so Ivan drops everything to be at the hospital for the birth of his child. It is a long drive to the hospital and during his journey, he has a series of life-changing phone calls with his wife Katrina (Ruth Wilson) who is just learning about the affair, his clueless sons who want him to come home to watch the football, his panicking colleagues including Donal (Andrew Scott) and the distressed woman who is about to have his child (Olivia Colman).

Hardy has proved to be one of the most impressive actors working today. He has a way of using his facial expressions to convey a range of emotions. So it makes perfect sense to cast him in Locke where he is the only actor the audience gets to see for 85 minutes. Even though most of the film is just Hardy driving a car and taking a series of phone calls, there is absolutely nothing boring about it. While he has the movie star good looks, Hardy hides it under a beard in the film, and yet it does not hinder his ability to express emotion. Indeed, it is his ability to engage the audience with his eyes and gestures that makes his performance so powerful.

Writer/director Steven Knight has written a well-crafted script with a good blend of humour to balance out the drama. The use of lighting is also very effective. Locke may be a small budget film about an ordinary man doing ordinary things, but it is compelling viewing.