With this movie, we’re finishing our trilogy of recent horror comedies set in an office environment. First, we had Bloodsucking Bastards then Office Uprising and now it’s time for Mayhem. A movie that has nothing to do with the cult Norwegian Black Metal band of the same name. What it does have something to do is violent entertainment. It’s a funny, bloody, and above all well-constructed movie that will keep you engaged for ninety minutes. It feels like a stylish version of The Purge in a closed environment. The production values are excellent and the cinematography is tight. Moreover, it’s got that sleek-looking and appealing vibe that makes it really easy on the eye.
Driven by excellent performances by Steven Yeun and Samara Weaving, Mayhem is a vibrant and fun horror-comedy. Granted, all the concepts have been seen before but sometimes you want to watch something familiar and cozy. I loved Yeun in The Walking Dead and I don’t think I need to tell you how much I’ve fallen for beautiful Samara ever since I saw her in The Babysitter. Also, I won’t bore you how it’s similar to Office Space and The Office as we covered that in the other two movies. Since the story was perfectly primed for some outrageously violent and gruesome scenes, I was surprised that there weren’t any. I really needed to see some funny graphic violence like in Braindead for example.
A deadly virus named ID-7 quickly spread throughout the world, infecting most of the population. It lowers your inhibitions making you crave murder, sex, and just general mayhem. God forbid a virus like this ever makes it to one of the corporate offices. One would imagine that what would follow would be total chaos.
Right from the start, you can see that the Mayhem doesn’t take itself too seriously. And that’s a great thing since it doesn’t come off as pretentious or overly commercial. I like this honest approach where everybody knows what they’re getting themselves into. So, if you’re expecting anything other than some lighthearted gory fun, you’ll be disappointed. The pacing is fast and action relentless with a structure similar to Bruce Lee’s immortal Game of Death. We start at the bottom floor of an office building and must make our way to the top where the executives are. Check out Dredd and The Raid if you’re looking for more similar movies.
I also like how they dealt with the morality issue, cleverly explaining it away with the infection. The only thing I didn’t like was that nasty red-eye thing. It looked positively disgusting and repulsive but I guess that was the goal. Finally, if you want to continue in the same direction, check out Murder Party, another great work-related movie.
Director: Joe Lynch
Writer: Matias Caruso
Cast: Steven Yeun, Samara Weaving, Steven Brand, Caroline Chikezie, Steven Brand, Caroline Chikezie
Fun Facts: The two employees having sex in the background of Derek’s video were actually having sex on set. The actor and actress were in a relationship.