review by Bobby Blakey
When you think of Lil Rel Howery you think of the comedy, but every so often he shows up in something unexpected like Get Out. Now he is taking on a different kind of dramatic role with his latest film The Mill co-starring Patrick Fischler, Pat Healy, and Karen Obilom from director Sean King O’Grady. Coul this film bring something new to the workplace or will it be a quota not worth meeting?
The Mill follows a businessman who mysteriously wakes up in an open-air prison cell with only an old grist mill. Forced to work as a beast of burden, he must find a way to escape before the birth of his child.
Other than knowing Howery was in the film I knew nothing about this film heading in. I didn’t even read the synopsis at the time and I am glad I didn’t. It is not really a horror film, but kind of a thriller of sorts. On the surface it follows one man’s fight for answers and survival in a strange situation. While these things are factual it is so much deeper than that if you really pay attention to what it’s telling you.
This entire imprisonment is a physical metaphor of the workplace, treatment of employees, wasted efforts and betrayal all wrapped up in this strange little torture place. Almost the entire film is just Howery in this mysterious location alone. He is communicating with mysterious voices and a computer, but is the only person you see. He brings all kinds of range here and really does an awesome job. The entire film hinges on his performance and from beginning to end he kills it.
As you watch it unfold you will no doubt make various guesses to what’s going on or how to get out of it, but try to just let it play out and enjoy in its interesting
direction. I really got sucked into this flick as it became more clear to what it was all about, but think that the ending might throw some. It makes so much more sense to some of the other elements that happen, but might lose some.
I don’t want to say to much or spoil this flick because I think people need to just check it out and let it unfold for themselves. Decide for yourself and check out The Mill streaming now on Hulu.