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The final eight candidates for a highly desirable corporate job are locked together in an exam room and given a test with one question. It seems simple yet confusing that soon, tensions begin to unravel.
During IMF & World Bank Summit and demonstrations which upset Madrid, like other capitals, major corporation Dekia holds interviews to recruit a top executive from seven applicants. Their doubts start when they have to sign a clause accepting the Grönholm method, which nobody ever heard of. It soon becomes clear the tests are dirty mind games, but never what is true and what the trick. They must guess who among them is the HR mole, and repeatedly eliminate one of their number from the procedure. Their priorities, ethics and loyalty are put trough stressing tests. Written by
The idea was nice: 7 people in one room and a kind of role-play game as a selection to get 1 much coveted position in a big corporation. How long can a movie benefit from a good premise and keep all aboard despite a slight shortage in the follow-up? Admittedly it is 10 minutes, 10 minutes that are sufficient for the audience to judge whether the movie delivers the goods or not (with regards to the level of expectations set beforehand).
El Método doesn't fall flat after 10 or 30 minutes, instead it gradually loses traction with each eliminated applicant. With the first applicant on the way out the movie already shows its inner weaknesses. Actually this character goes too fast from a pretty strong position in the group to the status of a victim. I'd say this means the script was quite a bit weak.
ONE SIMPLE GOOD IDEA IS FINE, BUT THE SIMPLER THE IDEA THE STRONGER THE SCRIPT AND DIRECTION NEED TO BE
When you watch the movie there's an inner mechanism of suspense (Next out?) leading you to expect more from the next elimination, so there's some kind of suspension of disbelief stretched until you no longer care for the outcome. The movie lost me as a good-willing viewer (i.e. not getting to think about what is wrong in it) with the luncheon intermezzo. Just before that, the second applicant was out, losing through a 'Nuclear after-world' role play which was good, not great but it was right to heat up the atmosphere. The lunch was certainly necessary to change gears, deviate, scatter and broaden the narration, yet it feels more like a lull. Lasts too long as a whole as well as in the inter-cut narrative between the various sub-groups. Script softness plus direction flaw. Stemming down from there the ending is not very interesting, you no longer care for one character or the other.
10 MINUTES DEAL?
So was the movie getting bad only halfway? No, actually the titles already say it all. They mean nothing, don't set up the narration, and worse of all the images chosen as a dressing for the opening credits represent exactly the kind of cliché a lazy director would chose. You've got vignettes of various characters waking up and on their ways to the building for the group job interview. What can be more devoid of creativity than a movie starting with a character waking up in the morning then having breakfast? Can you believe some useless split-screen makes this poor start even worse? On the other hand the alter-globalization demonstration context is a fine idea but it's not enforced to the full in the closed-space narration.
On the whole a movie that would have need re-writing and a better director. Bring in the true talents for a remake.
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