It came as quite a surprise to hear that the director of Guardians Of The Galaxy, James Gunn, had time to write and produce an insane horror thriller during the same time he was developing and making Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2. Gunn just recently completed the Guardians sequel, and a trailer for his next film, The Belko Experiment has already arrived.
Normal people would take time off after making a massive film like GotG Vol. 2, but not #JamesGunn. The Belko Experiment is preparing for a March 2017 release date. Gunn had this to say on how he developed the concept behind The Belko Experiment:
I had always been horrified and fascinated by tales of social experiments that transgress morality, whether it be those of Stanley Milgram, Unit 731, or TV's 'Big Brother.' This was a chance to explore the extremes, but with fictional characters (and I still feel guilty, as I love them just like I love all the characters I write).
How far would you have to be pushed to take an innocent life? Are your actions true expressions of what you profess to believe?"
Beyond James Gunn finding the time to shepherd this passion project, The Belko Experiment is a big departure from Marvel, hearkening back to the genre films the filmmaker was originally best known for.
Here's the trailer for The Belko Experiment. Be warned, its NSFW — even though it takes place in the workplace.
If you've ever been scared that your boss or the company you work for might set up some insane social experiment, using you as one of the test subjects, you should probably steer clear away from The Belko Experiment, because this film is guaranteed to foster nightmares about your worst fears coming true.
What Is 'The Belko Experiment'?
The Belko Experiment sets up 80 individuals who work within the Belko Organization as participants in a social experiment. The participants vary between low-level office employees to mid-level executives. When the experiment begins, an order is given for all the participants to kill three of their coworkers, or watch six of them die. No one seems to believe the announcements are serious until a tracking implant in one of them explodes, then things get serious. Soon, people are freaking out and survival instincts start kicking in, all the participants are ready to do anything to survive — including killing the people they work with.
For such an unassuming workplace setting, The Belko Experiment is lining up to be one of the most psychologically terrifying horror films of 2017. Most horror films rely on a dark or ghostly figure to instill fear in the audience, but The Belko Experiment is a large departure from that approach, and Gunn and director Greg McLean have done something incredibly creative with The Belko Experiment. Rather than utilizing a supernatural spectre or something evidently evil, Gunn and McLean present self preservation as the trigger for evil intent, making that instinct the villain of his latest film.
By placing 80 vulnerable individuals in a social experiment to see who can survive, Gunn and McLean are relying on the inherent evil within people to be the true horror of their newest film. We can assume Gunn has a grim ending in store for most of his cast in The Belko Experiment, but some of them could make it out alive.
Regardless of who survives, the journey to the end will probably be one filled with more suspense than you can handle. Just from watching the trailer for The Belko Experiment, it appears as if there'll be multiple scenes that are cringeworthy but you can't turn away from. In all honesty, the film will likely be more of a suspense thriller than a horror film. From what can be gathered in the trailer, people are guaranteed to die, so it's going to be a heart-pounding race to see who'll die next.
If you're not keen on spoilers, you should probably look away now since we'll be citing and going over a few potential scenes in The Belko Experiment.
Scene 1: Tracking Chip Implanted In Unassuming Employee Explodes Out The Back Of His Skull
The first segment of the trailer introduced the outrageous order given over the intercom at work. Most would assume that a ridiculous directive like killing three of your coworkers would be taken as a very tasteless joke — and that's what it seems like — until one poor employee's head pops open like a balloon in a crowded room. That's when you know shit has hit the fan.
The trailer also provides us with a bit of insight into why the guy's head pops open. In The Belko Experiment, the employees of Belko are fitted with a tracking chip implanted in their necks. It's supposedly used to track each employee's whereabouts, but they also serve another function — the tracking implants can be detonated on command. There's no telling how many or if any will be left alive. That is, unless some smart characters (like Mike) remove their tracking implant before it explodes.
Scene 2: Mike Milch Takes Out His Own Explosive Tracking Implant
In a split-second shot, Mike Milch (played by John Galllagher Jr.) can be seen removing the tracking implant from his head. The whole scene is guaranteed to make you cringe as John digs deep into his own neck for a small chip, while risking the explosive blowing up as he removes it.
The announcers giving the directives order the participants in the experiment not to tamper with the tracking implants. Hopefully Mike Milch gets the implant out before it explodes, and is smart enough to dispose of it before it explodes near him. Although, The Belko Experiment wouldn't be a horror film if it didn't come with a horrific twist — like showing Mike successfully remove the explosive chip from his neck, only to have it explode in his hand as he attempts to get rid of it.
Scene 3: The Order Sounds — Kill 30 People Or Watch 60 People Die
Probably one of the most terrifying moments for the audience will be when the order sounds for the participants to kill 30 people or watch 60 people die. It doesn't seem anyone, much less half of all participants would be willing to give up their lives, only to watch countless die anyway, which means the people who want to survive are going to be forced to kill the other half.
Seeing as how one half of the participants in the experiment will have to kill the other half to survive, the social experiment is going to turn into a bloody brawl. When it comes down to living or dying, the people within the experiment are going to have to choose and they're going to fight their way out to survive.
Scene 4: Barry Norris Starts Pulling Triggers
From what can be seen in the trailer, Barry Norris (Tony Goldwyn) will be one of the more civil-minded individuals, — at first. When the trailer begins, Barry can be heard quoting that "no one has the right to take the life of anyone else," which means he'll attempt to keep everyone level-headed until they're rescued. However, it seems as if something will cross Barry's breaking point and he'll come to the realization that his family is waiting for him at home, so Barry is going to do whatever it takes to survive, and that includes killing anyone who gets in his way.
Scene 5: Unknown Victim Gets Legs Axed
In another split-second image, we can see that another unassuming victim gets his legs axed from behind. The identity of the victim is unknown, but it appears as if the scene takes place when the directive for one half of the staff to kill the other is announced. Although, the scene could take place at any point in the film, a person having both their legs cut down with an ax is bound to make a few people in the audience squirm.
Scene 6: Waiting In An Empty Elevator Shaft
There's nothing discernibly horrifying about this scene other than two individuals have their legs dangling in an empty elevator shaft. To most, it wouldn't seem all that dangerous if you take the appropriate precautions, but when survival is determined by the number of people you kill, an opportunity to increase the kill count might provoke a weaker individual to throw someone down an elevator shaft.
Scene 7: Wendell Dukes Becomes A Cleaver Slasher
In the last screenshots of the trailer, John C. McGinley, the actor who plays Wendell Dukes, goes off the reservation with his thirst for blood. McGinley's character Wendell isn't given any backstory in the brief trailer for The Belko Experiment, but we can expect Wendell to develop some crazed motives at some point in the film.
What Else Can We Expect From 'The Belko Experiment'?
Those were just of some of the scenes that are bound to stand out in James Gunn's newest film, The Belko Experiment. There'll assuredly be more cringeworthy moments to look forward, as well as a possible second trailer to give us more to gawk at. In the meantime, enjoy rewatching the the trailer for The Belko Experiment. That is, unless it's already more than you can bare. If you're faint of heart or don't like bloody-gory slasher flicks, The Belko Experiment probably isn't for you, but if you're one for a suspense-filled thrill rides, paired with multiple, visually grotesque scenes, then The Belko Experiment might just be your cup of tea.
What do you think of the trailer for The Belko Experiment?