THE BELKO EXPERIMENT (REVIEW)
Dir. Greg McLean
Reviewer. Martyn Wakefield
Greg McLean may not yet be a household name yet but his directorial work is to be revered. Whether it be the outback horror series that is WOLF CREEK, creature feature ROGUE or supernatural terror of THE DARKNESS, the Australian director has had a storming introduction to the genre. As a director to prove he’s not a one trick pony, he once again takes steer in a different direction with THE BELKO EXPERIMENT.
This time round, a group of office workers based in Columbia arrive for a normal days work only ot learn that there is a military lock down of their site. Once inside, they are introduced to the voice of a gamemaster who clearly sets out the days expectation, in eight hours time, all but one of the employees will die.
A few nifty introductions make it clear the gameskeeper is not playing and his sick game is something the employees are going to have to abide by. Hour by hour the rules change and as the staff levels dwindle, the stakes increase.
While THE BELKO EXPERIMENT is in essence a re-tread of territory walked before, most famously by BATTLE ROYALE, the sheer amount of blood spilt and disregard to any longevity to the central characters makes this a gripping watch. Believe me when I say there is no shortage of brutality here with one of the highest body counts of the genre in a mere 90 minute run time, no stone is left unturned when it comes to weaponry in a battle for survival.
With a simple story that borrows it’s plot from BATTLE ROYAL and mythos of THE CABIN IN THE WOODS, there’s a larger world building exercise here that hopefully we see much more of. There isn’t much depth here and after the midway point the kills literally come quick and fast but never les entertaining. While the simplicity of the scene setting works, it would be interesting to see where this series can go and with a worldwide corporation like Belko at the centre of it all, the world is literally the oyster.
Blood, guts and violence like no other, THE BELKO EXPERIMENT really is a bad day at the office but one that makes itself enjoyably entertaining. For those searching for some on screen non-stop action then this will fill a void that the genre appears to have at the moment.