Sundance London 2019 Preview - Corporate Animals
Dir: Patrick Brice
Starring Demi Moore, Jessica Williams, Ed Helms, Karan Soni
Peep Show writer Sam Bain makes his bid for the Hollywood big screen with this darkly twisted, often very funny comedy horror.
Demi Moore is the corporate demagogue, head of a company that produces “Incredible Edible Cutlery”, a company that unbeknownst to its staff is on the brink of financial collapse. To boost morale and cover over the fact of its impending collapse, Moore takes her motley crew on a team building exercise, and, whilst caving, get trapped by an earthquake. As escape or rescue look unlikely, office grievances are vented, a Lord of the Flies mentality kicks in, followed rapidly by imminent cannibalism, newt vomiting and a Britney Spears singing gash of the leg.
As Bain’s script progresses, Brice’s film moves from black comedy to dalliances with horror movie tropes, a blend that is for the most part successful. (Though a brief psychedelic animated hallucination – featuring the B-52s and a flying Gary Sinise in CSI New York mode - takes things a touch too far and breaks the mood.)
As edgy as the film is, there is a feeling that it could always go further, as if it is being held back. Of course, this could always be the case that, as funny as this is at times, it’s not an easy ride if you’re a claustrophobe.