The Belko Experiment, 2017.
Directed by Greg McLean.
Starring John Gallagher Jr, Michael Rooker, John C. McGinley, Tony Goldwyn, Sean Gunn, Adria Arjona, David Dastmalchian, Owain Yeoman, Rusty Schwimmer, Melonie Diaz, Brent Sexton, and Gregg Henry.
In a twisted social experiment, 80 Americans are locked in their high-rise corporate office in Bogotá, Colombia and ordered by an unknown voice coming from the company’s intercom system to participate in a deadly game of kill or be killed.
You’re sitting at your normal office job when a voice comes from the intercom saying that you have 2 hours to kill 30 people in your office, if you don’t then 60 of you will die. What would you do? This is the premise of the delightfully twisted and darkly comic The Belko Experiment. Written by James Gunn (Slither, Guardians of the Galaxy) and directed by Greg McLean (Wolf Creek), The Belko Experiment doesn’t cover any new territory when it comes to plot but it is tons of fun and gory as hell.
Our main “protagonist” is Mike Milch (Gallagher Jr). Mike has strong views on what to do in this situation but is surrounded by people who seem a bit too eager to kill. By giving us one focal character to root for Gunn and McLean create a focal point for their film and a strong moral compass. Milch’s view on what they should do doesn’t change, whereas he’s surrounded by all sorts of corporate tools who are only too eager to start hacking at people’s heads.
The Belko Experiment is one of those films where you continually mutter to yourself “I recognise them” and then immediately after the film you IMDB it to find out why you recognise nearly every single person. Having a pack of character actors together in this situation is essential as you can always recognise them even if you’re still not 100% sure what their name is in this movie. Personal favourites for me are John C. McGinley who is clearly a complete nut job (as shown in the trailer) and Sean Gunn as a far out stoner.
If you don’t have a strong stomach then avoid The Belko Experiment at all costs. For me the carnage echoed the elevator scene in The Cabin in the Woods with wall to wall blood and a lot of bashed in skulls. Gunn and McLean have gone all out with new and inventive ways to kill that make this film hugely entertaining and also sickening. It does raise similar questions to Battle Royale etc but they aren’t thrust to the forefront, instead this is a gore-fest of epic proportions that is a must see for anyone who enjoys horror and quick witted characters.
Flickering Myth Rating: Film: ★ ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★ ★