Directed by Greg McLean
Written by James Gunn
Starring John Gallagher Jr., Tony Goldwyn, Adria Arjona,
John C. McGinley, Michael Rooker, David Dastmalchian,
Brent Sexton, Stephen Blackehart
Running Time 1:29
There have been multiple stories in the news lately regarding various initiatives from companies micro-chipping employees. They all say its for their employees convenience and is to make things like logging onto their computers, or accessing the building easier. Just a step forward in convenience and efficiency, right?! Well, maybe I've been a horror fan too long but I'm pretty sure I don't remember too many evil geniuses or mad scientists monologuing about the reality of their nefarious plans until the end. You know "THE END" like when the last victim is clinging to life, sucking in their last raspy breathes... And then it struck just how freaking smart James Gunn was in writing the story behind The Belko Experiment nearly ten years ago, and how cool that happenstance kept it on the shelves only to be made and released in a year when we get to watch so many of the themes of the film evolve in front of our very eyes on the nightly news.
The Belko Experiment, written by James Gunn (Guardians of The Galaxy 1&2), and expertly directed by Greg McLean (Wolfs Creek 1&2) is not only creepy in its timely arrival, its also one hell of a fun ride. What these two power houses of story telling have done together is something pretty special. They have created a film that is fraught with complexities, but yet completely accessible. Its a film that fans NEED to watch, and support. It is a refreshing change of pace from the abundance of cookie cutter horror films, and remakes so prevalent today. There wasn't a moment of this film that I didn't thoroughly enjoy. The Belko Experiment is a shining example of smart movie making choices.
One of the first things you'll notice, in this film, is the multiple levels of talent. This film is an ensemble of names that will leave you drooling! You've got a story from one of the hottest names in the industry right now, James Gunn!! Add Greg McLean, the man that taught us that the outback is, quite simply, terrifying. Then throw in acting talents like Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy 1&2, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Slither...) John C McGinley (Stan Against Evil, Scrubs, Office Space...), John Gallager Jr (10 Cloverfield Lane, Hush, Jonah Hex), Adria Ajorna (True Detective, Emerald City), Tony Goldwynn (Scandal, Last House on the Left -2009, Jason Lives: Friday the 13th part 6...) and you have a fandom feast and Ive barely scratched the surface of the talents attached.
The cast alone is enough to completely invest you in the film, but there's still so much more that it has to offer fans.
Another thing that won't escape the attention of horror fans is the effects! They are AWESOME! I was really impressed at the visuals and gore this film offers up. There are some heart wrenching, gut turning scenes that bring a whole new meaning to cut throat corporate America, making this film stand out from the pack. This isn't a film that relies on cgi to carry it from point to point. It seems to blend effects effortlessly, and for the most part extremely believably. This is another reason it ranks as one of my top ten films of the year so far!
Set in Bogota, Columbia, The Belko Experiment is the story of a bunch of expatriates all working abroad for a corporation that has moved to this exotically beautiful, yet economically depressed backdrop for what we can only imagine are all the wrong reasons, and there are so many wrong reasons to ponder. However, imagine all you want and chances are you still won't get quite the right combination of underhanded ugliness that this story holds. It's quite literally a corporate battle royale for the ages, and would make any corporate raider cringe in fear. Yet again (and hate to repeat myself) the film is still so much more than than the battle for survival that it seems. It's a dark, believable social experiment gone completely right... And once again a reflection of the incredibly smart choices made by the team behind the film.
The Belko Experiment is a film that could have easily became pretentious in its deeper messages of personal freedom, over-consumerism, corporate greed and new world order conspiracies (to name a few), but never does. No matter what bigger message you decide to take away from this film the bottom line is it's just a damn good film, and worthy of some fandom! So do yourself a favor folks, watch it, rent it, hell buy it! Its available on VOD, DVD and BluRay. It's a keeper for sure! Check out the trailer below ...
And in closing in staying transparent I'd like to say THANK YOU to @FoxHomeEnt for setting us up with this tasty bit of cinema, #BelkoExpirment. Although we were provided this film by the kind folks @FoxHomeEntertainment they did not request a review, we just loved the film and wanted to share our thoughts and had we purchased the film independently the results would have been the same... Don't believe me?? Check it out for yourself, and tell us your thoughts!