There are times in your life where an event happens and you can recall exactly where you were at that moment. Fangirls across the world remember as they wailed in unison for the passing of Glenn Rhee from The Walking Dead. When I saw that he was involved in another project called Mayhem, faith was restored, and when I saw it was a Joe Lynch film, I was ecstatic.
I came across Joe Lynch the first time in Adam Green’s Holliston, the amazing horror sitcom that EVERYONE should be watching. Joe plays the aspiring horror film director opposite Green’s aspiring writer. After listening to him talk on their podcast “The Movie Crypt,” I just thought he seemed like an awesome person.
In my opinion, Joe established a signature style with his movie Knights of Badassdom. This is a snarky comedy with a lot of blood; it’s hard to tell if it’s a funny horror flick or a gore-filled comedy. Mayhem takes that horror comedy signature up a notch.
Imagine if you will, that God Bless America and The Belko Experiment were making sweet, sweet love then 28 Days Later runs in and decides it wants part of the action. Then, the Double Dragon game runs in and it’s just a wild orgy. Nine months later, Mayhem pops out and it’s anyone’s guess who the parents are.
Beware all who haven’t seen the movie yet, for spoilers abound in the review ahead.
Mayhem follows attorney Derek Cho, played by our favorite bad ass Steven Yeun (The Walking Dead). He has worked his way up the corporate ladder for a coveted corner office. One day, Melanie Cross (Samara Weaving: The Babysitter (you can read our review here), Ash Vs. The Evil Dead) comes in to save her family’s home, but she is ignored and forcibly removed from the conference room. That same day, Cho is framed by a co-worker known as The Siren (Caroline Chikezie: Eragon) and fired from his position, but not before everyone in the office is affected by a virus that causes people to lose all inhibitions and act out their wildest impulses.
After the building is quarantined, everyone in it has to wait out the eight hours it takes for the neutralizing gas to take effect. During that time, everything – including murder – is on the table due to the infection, and no legal action can be taken. Cho takes it upon himself to force his way to the top with Cross, who also didn’t make it out in time, to get to John “The Boss” Towers (Steven Brand: The Scorpion King) and get his job back.
But to get to the top, he’s going to have to shed some blood. There was a fun little appearance by another Walking Dead favorite Dallas Roberts, who played Milton before the Governor made him go bitey and take out one of the least liked characters in the series.
This movie rocked my fucking socks off. The soundtrack made me feel like I was playing Double Dragon or watching an ’80s action movie. The shots in the film only added to it and they worked perfectly. Sometimes horror filmmakers try to get so artsy that it actually takes away from the movie rather than helping it along, but Mayhem was shot to perfection. The script was written by Matias Caruso and filmed in Belgrade, Serbia.
Immediately, this film FEELS like you’re actually right there in an office building in corporate America, and it just makes you nauseated like a wicked case of sea-sickness. The atmosphere was established easily and beautifully. You can almost smell the crappy break room coffee in the air. You immediately hate “The Man” and root for Yeun as he and Weaving punch, kick and nail gun their way from floor to floor. And if you thought Yeun was a bad ass in The Walking Dead, well gird your loins, ladies, because you’re about to get real thirsty real fast.
Weaver was perfect in her role as Melanie. Her screams of pain were agonizingly convincing and you truly felt that she was enjoying herself. It was like a live action round of Dead By Daylight. The chemistry between the two of them was as good as I have ever seen in any movie. Their snarky comments and irritation played off of each other, and I may be a bit biased, but I’m a huge fan of when the Asian dude not only survives the movie but gets the girl.
In true Shyamalan form, Joe Lynch has a cameo as the best goddamn I.T. guy in the world. I loved his character and his creepy mustache. I only wish he was in there more. There’s no gratuitous nudity save for a single pair of boobs and a very naked man running through a back shot. And can we PLEASE talk about the people in the background. Let me really quickly start a slow clap for the extras in this movie. Funniest background crew ever. As you are watching Mayhem, keep an eye on the peanut gallery.
This movie is excellent. It has been an amazing year for horror between IT and Victor Crowley and now Mayhem. I was thoroughly impressed and enjoyed myself immensely. Mayhem is currently available to purchase on iTunes.
The end was tied up in a pretty bow and ended with one of the best quotes I’ve ever heard. That is what I will leave you with today: