A down-on-his-luck comic collector finds himself in a situation that goes from bad, to worse, to just plain outlandish in Ray Spivey’s quirky horror-comedy Storage Locker.
Packer Stanley (Avery Mayo) isn’t in a very good place. His fiance, Jenni (Hannah Hufford) is fed up with his obsession with collecting and selling comic books – and after he gets mugged and loses their honeymoon money, she promptly dumps him. He’s homeless, beat up, and desperate to find a place to store his extensive (and expensive) assemblage of comics. Fortunately, he’s able to find a storage unit with an available space, and it just so happens to be owned by the mysterious Leto sisters (Bobbie Grace and Meredyth Fowler), who are also in the market of collecting. Unfortunately, though, Packer soon discovers the alluring sisters are also witches, who require bribes and unconventional tasks for him to complete in exchange for the storage unit.
From here, it only gets more bizarre, as Packer becomes deeper involved in their world, while also under threat from a strange, child-like creature who is on a murderous rampage. As he tries to sort out his life and somehow unfurl from the grasp the rich witch sisters have on him, he must also solve the deepening mystery of the Leto family, the elusive creature, and his connection to all of it.
Storage Locker is a conundrum of a film. Right from the start, it’s very clear this is a low-budget endeavor. With stiff, awkward acting from nearly the entire cast, to odd, abrupt transitions between scenes, to a distracting lack of soundtrack, this is a movie that struggles heavily in the quality department. With a runtime of nearly two hours, it’s also woefully bloated, meandering onto subplots that not only don’t make sense, but aren’t needed for continuity or enjoyments sake at all. There are entire scenes that linger far too long and could be cut entirely, and because of the jerky editing, it can be confusing at times to keep up with the plot.
And yet…there’s something about this story that is inexplicably charming. This is largely due to an intriguing and likable set of characters, most notably with the woebegone Packer. Mayo is, by far, the best actor in the entire film, and thanks to the hefty helping of comedic moments peppered throughout, he absolutely nails the scenes where he’s exasperated and sarcastic. His comedic timing is one of the most gleeful surprises in Storage Locker, if only they could have leaned more heavily into that. There’s also his delightful and lovable friendship with Chas (David Trevino), which helps to give this story heart. It’s chock full of real-life comic book references and Easter Eggs, particularly relating to Spider-Man that are sure to appeal to fans and readers.
Once the story turns more suspenseful and horror-centered during the final act, it loses a lot of the momentum built up with the more lighthearted scenes. The climax seems as though it’s going somewhere, but a few of the more confusing plot points remain unsolved and ambiguous.
Storage Locker is what happens when a cook decides to add too many extra helpings of spices and ingredients to a pot of soup that’s already satisfying, leaving the palette confused and bitter. It’s those comedic gems and character interactions that give this movie depth and watchability, but also make it difficult to review. If you can fight through the plodding runtime, cringe-worthy acting by some of the cast, and fragmented editing, this does supply enough fun scenes for an entertaining watch.