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STORAGE

SYNOPSIS:
17-year-old Jimmy (Matt Scully) goes to live with his Uncle Leonard (Damien Garvey), an ex SAS officer, who runs a below-ground storage facility in the city, where Zia (Saskia Burmeister) works as receptionist. While exploring the maze of corridors, Jimmy comes across a deeply disturbed man, Francis (Robert Mammone), who seems to be storing evidence of a crime in his storage unit. Jimmy and Leonard are shocked to discover, in a red drum barrel at the back of the unit, evidence that suggests Francis is a murderer. But appearances can be deceiving - and deadly - as Jimmy and Zia discover.

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
With its genuine gasp! shocks, Storage is a little gem of a horror thriller, unpredictable and intense. Matt Scully does well as Jimmy, the vulnerable youngster who has to make the journey from innocent teenager to enterprising survivor in a very short time. Saskia Burmeister is excellent as his unexpected companion-in-fear, while Damien Garvey is formidable as the mild mannered but deadly Uncle Leonard, who runs his storage facility like a well oiled machine .... but what does the machine do?

Robert Mammone delivers in a difficult role with ambiguous characteristics and the whole story is tightly constructed within the confines of a self store facility. The detail is important (isn't it always) and Michael Craft is aptly named as a filmmaker who knows his ... er... craft.

The film had its world premiere at the 2009 Dungog Film Festival, where it was received with loud gasps and shocked yelps - and finally nervous applause.

Review by Louise Keller:
Things are not always what they seem in this snappy Aussie thriller that dishes out twist after twist right until the final frame. Storage is a wonderful surprise and the fact that we buy the plot leaps is a credit to its writer director Michael Craft, as our moral compass is well and truly shaken. An original premise with good characterisations, the story is nicely told and there are a few scares as well.

The opening scenes show that violence is found in places other than Charles Bronson movies after Matt Scully’s Jimmy and his father Malcolm (Robert Price) enjoy a night out at the movies. It’s a pivotal scene and as the story unfolds, we are reminded of Malcolm’s words ‘If you wanted to sort it out, he’d be the bloke you’d call’. We are lured into the world of storage units through Jimmy’s innocent eyes when he goes to work for his uncle Leonard (Damien Garvey) and we quickly learn there is substance to the company manager’s words when he ways ‘Everyone’s got something weird in this place.’ There’s a widow with an antique vase, a bikie with illicit chemicals as well as surveillance tapes, rat traps, photographs, dirty clothes, a gun, missing persons and plenty of surprises. The less you know about the plot itself, the juicier it becomes.

Garvey (reminiscent of an older George Clooney) is terrific as Leonard, the man who promises to sort out anything that's too dodgy, as is Scully (reminiscent of Prince William), the youngster who discovers that everything IS dodgy. Robert Mammone is effective as the emotional owner of Unit 830, one of the orange doors in the corridor of turquoise corrugated iron walls and Saskia Burmeister has a lovely natural presence. Together, they cook up a devil of a stew.

There are actions, reactions and consequences to everything that happens, and by the time we have become immersed in this world where secrets are as durable as the red barrels intended for items that require longevity, we have been well satisfied. I especially like the way Craft completes our journey, linking it back to the opening scene. Thoroughly good entertainment.
 

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 2
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

MICHAEL CRAFT INTERVIEW

STORAGE (MA)
(Aust, 2009)

CAST: Matt Scully, Damien Garvey, Saskia Burmeister, Robert Mammone

PRODUCER: Gregor Drugowitsch, Michael Craft, Elizabeth Symes

DIRECTOR: Michael Craft

SCRIPT: Michael Craft

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Tony Luu

EDITOR: Geoff Lamb

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Michelle Sotheren

RUNNING TIME: 96 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: RichVein

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: August 13, 2009







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