Instructed via intercom to kill two people in the next half hour, 80 American expats in Bogotá turn on each other in a desperate attempt to survive.
Director: Greg McLean
Starring: Tony Goldwyn, John C. McGinley, Melonie Diaz, John Gallagher Jr., Greg McLean, Adria Arjona, Gregg Henry, Michael Rooker, Sean Gunn, Rusty Schwimmer, Abraham Benrubi, David Del Rio, Brent Sexton, Owain Yeoman, James Earl, Josh Brener, David Dastmalchian, Gail Bean
Information Page: https://uk.newonnetflix.info/info/80141982
We start “The Belko Experiment” with a Latin-American rendition of the song “I Will Survive” – given the horrors that are going to unfold, it is a little bit surreal. Belko is a company with offices in Colombia; here they employ 80 Americans who work alongside the locals. One morning on the way into work, there are a number of new security guards and only the Americans are allowed to enter. In the opening ten minutes we meet new couple Mike (John Gallagher Jr.) and Leandra (Adria Arjona) and a new member of staff called Dany (Melonie Diaz) who is explaining to her manager that she opted for the tracker implant due to potential security issues in the region.
It doesn’t take long until a mysterious voice announces over the tannoy that in eight hours, most of them will be dead and in the next half hour they are required to kill two people or else more will die. The security doors then close sealing everybody in the building and people are left somewhat confused. And rightly so! Even if you haven’t seen the trailer or read the description, it only takes 12 minutes to find out exactly what the film is about – I like that, there’s no messing around.
A few emergency meetings are held and here we meet Chief Operating Officer Barry – played brilliantly by Tony Goldwyn, who you might remember as the bad guy in “Ghost” however, their 30 minutes are up and people get killed. There’s blood. Lots of it. Gore, too. This film isn’t for the squeamish! ‘The Voice’ comes back again and reads out some more rules – more people must die by a certain time. People panic, fear sets in and the natural will to survive at any costs kicks in. Without wanting to take away what “The Belko Experiment” offers, it’s a bit like “Battle Royale” but in an office block.
I mentioned earlier that we get straight to the story – but this does not mean we don’t learn about the characters. Instead of learning about the characters at the start of the film, we learn about them (or at least their personalities under pressure) throughout the film’s 88 minutes as we see two clear sides form – with a few predictable people being on the fence about their allegiances.
While it is a bit predictable at times, there are also a number of character arcs that I didn’t see coming. It’s a violent bloodbath and it’s very gripping and intense. Plus, it’s actually fun, rather than dwelling on the pain and violence being inflicted like you’d see in the “Saw” or “Hostel” films. They also manage to fit in a nice twist too – “Black Mirror” fans would likely enjoy it.
I saw “The Belko Experiment” in the £3 DVD section in Asda some time back but didn’t buy it – there are some amazingly terrible movies in that section – however, I wish I had. It would have been worth it!
Have you seen this film? Let us know your opinions in the comments below and of course if there are any films on Netflix UK you want us to review let us know!