Giuseppe Verdi’s magnificente “Requiem Dies Irae” is the grand glue that makes Battle Royale the genre masterpiece that it is.
Greg McLean’s The Belko Experiment, written by Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn (also writer of Dawn of the Dead and director of SLiTHER), is clearly inspired by the 2000 Japanese adaptation; it takes place during a twisted social experiment in which a group of 80 Americans are locked in their high-rise corporate office in Bogata, 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.
The filmmakers aren’t hiding their inspiration, lettings Giuseppe Verdi’s epic musical composition inspire this new trailer – one that also boasts the quote, “A combination of Battle Royale and Office Space” (I guess because John C. McGinley is in it?).
In theaters March 17, our very own Joe Lipsett reviewed the film out of TIFF calling it “a cocktail of murder and laughs.”
The cast is massive, including Tony Goldwyn, Adria Arjona (“True Detective”), John Gallagher Jr. (10 Cloverfield Lane), John C. McGinley (“Scrubs”), Sean Gunn (Super), David Dalmastian, Michael Rooker (Henry, Slither, “The Walking Dead”), Steven Blakeheart, Owain Yeoman, Rusty Schwimmer, Melonie Diaz, Josh Brener, David Del Rio, Abraham Benrubi, Gail Bean, Joe Fria, Ben Davis, James Earl, Brent Sexton, Mikaela Hoover, Valentine Miele.
Last May, McLean told us that Belko is “insanely violent and totally crazy…and total genius because of it…James wrote this amazing script full of heart, hilarious dark humour and amazing characters all wrapped around this wild concept.”
“Belko revolves around the American Belco company in South America which is mysteriously sealed off at the beginning of a work day,” Gunn explained when announced, “and its employees are ordered to kill each other or be killed themselves. This starts an escalation of violence, where we discover the true nature of each and every Belco employee.”
Here’s the official synopsis:
On what appears to be a normal day at Belko Industries, Belko employees are horrified when they find out that they’ve become guinea pigs in a company-wide experiment which will lead them to either kill their fellow employees or be murdered themselves. The experiment is masterminded by a mysterious voice which is controlling the loud speaker and instructing the employees to slaughter each other by any means necessary.
McLean also directed The Darkness, Wolf Creek and Rogue.