The Employer – USA, 2013

‘How far will they go to get the job?’

The Employer is a 2013 American macabre thriller feature film written and directed by Frank Merle. The movie stars Malcolm McDowell, David Dastmalchian, Paige Howard, Billy Zane and Michael DeLorenzo.

Review:

The Employer isn’t a hugely unique film… but it sure is damn entertaining! In the same fashion as Saw, Would You Rather, Hunger and Cube, The Employer is all about survival. How far would you go (in this instance) to land a dream job?

Frank Merle displays his gift of delivering the suspense and helpless trepidation with The Employer, a fantastically written movie that tests job candidates on their ambition to win at all costs.

Starring the astounding Malcolm McDowell as the employer, five applicants are interviewed for a coveted position at a highly revered firm – all of which are granted a final round before the selection is made. However, the final interview will be the last for four of the five candidates and not just for the open position!

Each contender is literally kidnapped the night before his/her scheduled interview, and wake up in a locked “escape room” with one goal set up by the employer… kill your way out – land the job.

Immediately, the five trapped interviewees begin to share background information as to how they ended up in this deathly situation. Sandra (Howard) is a former business owner, striving to make her mark in the corporate world.

Keith (DeLorenzo) is the smart mouthed, egocentric manipulator who feels he is the most deserving of the position. And no one overlooks the aloof wallflower, James (Dastmalchian) who does his best to keep the group focused on getting out of the cell through collective teamwork.

All the while they strategize their far-fetched plan to escape unharmed, the employer watches on with intrigue and a glimmer of evil satisfaction as the young detainees begin to turn on one another.

With the focus remaining on McDowell to lead the way to salvation, The Employer was set up for success as his charming charisma never strays from that snarky sneer. He is once again, outstanding!

Merle sets up the story for several twists and turns, more unpredictable than the norm. It’s an audition for the dog eat dog world, where there is truly no clear cut winner in the end. In the words of John Quinones: “What would you do?”

Meredith Brown, MOVIES and MANIA

Cast and characters:

  • Malcolm McDowell … The Employer
  • David Dastmalchian … James Harris
  • Paige Howard … Sandra Turner
  • Michael DeLorenzo … Keith Caverns
  • Matthew Willig … Mike Drake
  • Katerina Kopel … Billie Lewis (as Katerina Mikailenko)
  • Billy Zane … Alan
  • Nicki Aycox … Maggie Jordan
  • Daniel Aldema … Ted Simpson
  • Mark Alexander Herz … Dom
  • Bryan Hanna … Max
  • Nicholas Vukasovich … Ray
  • Jennifer Grace Farmer … Ms. Anderson
  • James Cooney … Pete Miller
  • Eli Goodman … Greg

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