Mayhem (2017) Review: I Believe You Have My Stapler
“Hostile. Work. Environment.”
Synopsis: A virus spreads through an office complex causing white collar workers to act out their worst impulses.
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Ludwig von Stroodle:
“Mayhem” is a pretty apt title. A viral outbreak causes anyone infected to lose all self control, so when it hits an office building right after Derek (Steven Yeun) gets fired, he’s got a free pass to fuck shit up.
It’s mostly a fun popcorn movie: violence for the sake of violence, with a few laughs every now and then. After years of playing Glen in The Walking Dead, Steven Yeun finally gets to let loose and show that he can do pissed-as-fuck, hell-bent on revenge, lunatic badass just as well as he does reserved nice guy Glen. He’s pretty damn convincing. Samara Weaving has a harder time selling it (she comes off more cool than angry), but still has her moments.
There’s a cheesy mobster movie style voiceover, complete with ridiculous nicknames. The lighting and cinematography give the film a distinctive, stylized feel that’s unusual for a B-movie. The red eye effect was also very well done; it’s a cool, subtle way of indicating someone is infected that could have easily been awful (just imagine if Syfy tried it). There’s plenty of blood, but not much gore, and just a bit of nudity. Considering the premise, the movie was definitely on the tame side. There wasn’t much new or disturbing in the violence, and it didn’t carry much weight. The overall feel was more action movie than horror; there’s not much tension or suspense, and lots of people die, but you were mostly rooting for them to bite it anyway.
It’s important to note that I watched this alone at home instead of at a theater; this is definitely the kind of movie that does better on the big screen with a rowdy audience (and booze wouldn’t hurt either), so see it there if you can, or at least with some friends. Still, it was a fun movie and good for a watch after a bad day at work.
I have to admit, watching this movie made me feel like a really boring person. If I was infected by this virus and knew I wouldn’t be held accountable for anything I did at work, I’d probably just go take a nap.
Ludwig von Stroodle’s Rating: C+
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