Five highly qualified applicants interview for a coveted job. On the night before the last round of interviews, they are all kidnapped and drugged. The next day, they wake up trapped together in a locked room without any hope of escape.
“The Employer” is an unimaginative thriller that involves a group of five people, who are kidnapped, and locked in the same room together. The film can be enjoyable with the right crowd, however, it is downright boring if you don’t. There are several films where a group of people are kidnapped, and forced to kill each other. The kidnapper usually forces his, or her victims to compete, or solve some sort of puzzle. In “The Employer,” the kidnapper simply tells the group that only one will survive, and that every time one dies he will give the survivors one of four passcodes they will need to escape.
The audience can deduct who the kidnapper is from the title of the film. The group of five figures out who kidnapped them early on in film. All five apply for a job in the Carcharias corporation, and the man who interviews them reveals himself as the kidnapper soon after they wake up in the room together. This takes away from the film, because figuring out who is behind the kidnappings, and watching the victims figure it out, is usually part of the fun.
Malcolm McDowell plays the part of The Employer, and he does a good job at it. The character is a cheesy villain without any substance, but McDowell delivers his lines well, and gives the best performance in the film. The rest of the cast do their best delivering lazily written lines. Michael DeLorenzo’s performance stands out because he portrays a particularly unlikable person.
If it had been a straightforward hack and slash, where the Employer used the interview process find his victims, then it might have worked. Instead of a straight-forward plot, the writers decided to depict Carcharias as a powerful corporation, and never reveal what exactly it is they do. Why do employees need to kill each other for positions? This lack of attention to this particular detail makes the film frustrating. The ending makes sense, however, it’s predictable, and just as unsatisfying as the rest of the film.