TNB Night Owl–The Employer

“Who will survive?” is one of the most popular fiction tropes. From Agatha Christie’s AND THEN THERE WERE NONE to the SAW movie franchise, audiences love trying to figure out who will survive, and who will meet their untimely demise. The familiar game is brought to the screen in THE EMPLOYER (2013), mixed with a little anti-corporatism, and we have a fresh yet familiar take on an old trope. Since Malcolm McDowell plays the titular character, it’s a great little movie for the Month of McDowell.

Three men and two women wake up locked in a room. Their phones are gone, most of their personal belongings are gone. The only thing they have in common are they all applied for a job at the Carcharias Corporation. The door is locked with four combination locks. An old cell phone rings and lets them know they’ll get the combination for each lock whenever one of the other applicants dies. The last one to survive gets out and gets the job. Flashbacks to the people’s lives are intercut with their time in the room and their interviews with the company CEO (McDowell).

At first they assume they can get out with everyone intact. As time goes on, you find some characters are more deserving of violence than others, and not everyone is as they seem. While not as gory as the SAW films, there is occasional bloodshed. The performances are fine, the script is workable. The main reason to watch this is McDowell as the sociopathic CEO. He does evil quite well. Oh, who am I kidding? He’s read text messages onstage and it was the best thing I saw all week.

Question of the night–what was the strangest job interview you ever had?

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