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The Killing Room

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Genre  Mystery, Thriller
Music director  Brian Tyler
Country  United States
5.8/10 IMDb

Director  Jonathan Liebesman
Initial DVD release  October 13, 2009 (USA)
Language  English
The Killing Room movie poster
Release date  January 16, 2009 (2009-01-16) (Sundance Film Festival)
Writer  Gus Krieger (screenplay), Ann Peacock (screenplay), Gus Krieger (story)
Cast  Timothy Hutton (Crawford Haines), Peter Stormare (Dr. Phillips), Chloë Sevigny (Ms. Reilly), Bill Stinchcomb (Cope), Nick Cannon (Paul Brodie), Clea DuVall (Kerry Isalano)
Similar movies  Fish Tank, The Last Witch Hunter, Jupiter Ascending, Factory Girl, The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things, At the Edge of the Abyss

The killing room 2009 official trailer

The Killing Room is a 2009 psychological thriller film directed by Jonathan Liebesman and starring Clea DuVall, Nick Cannon, Chloë Sevigny and Timothy Hutton. It premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. It is being distributed internationally by ContentFilm.


The Killing Room movie scenes


The Killing Room movie scenes

Four individuals sign up for a psychological research study only to discover that they are now subjects of a brutal, modern version of the Project MKULTRA indoctrination program. One by one, the subjects are brought into a large, white room, in which the tables and chairs have been bolted to the floor.

The Killing Room movie scenes

They are each given a questionnaire to fill out. In the meantime, a researcher enters the room, ostensibly to give an overview of the study. He indicates to the subjects—three men and a woman—that the study will take approximately eight hours to complete, at which time they will each be paid $250. Upon completing his introduction, the researcher shoots the female subject in the head with a gun and promptly leaves the room.

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Over the next few hours, the remaining three male subjects will be subjected to additional physical and psychological brutality. Only one subject will survive the ordeal. This subject manages to escape into the building. The loudspeaker gives details of where the subject is in the building. It is then realized that the subject is going where he is supposed to be. He ends up in a room with two other males tied to their chairs. The loudspeaker then states that phase 2 is to begin.

It is revealed, during the last subject's escape attempt, that the goal of the covert program is to achieve in human civilians a phenomenon similar to apoptosis in cells (a comparison noted in the film), by developing "civilian weapons" akin to suicide bombers.


  • Chloë Sevigny as Ms. Emily Reilly
  • Nick Cannon as Paul Brody
  • Timothy Hutton as Crawford Haines
  • Shea Whigham as Tony Mazzola
  • Peter Stormare as Dr. Phillips
  • Clea DuVall as Kerry Isalano
  • Reception

    The film met mixed reviews upon release, garnering a score of 67% on ratings aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes. MTV's Larry Carroll held the film in high regard as he nominally labeled it as the “best movie” at Sundance 2009, praising it as “brutal, daring and utterly unpredictable”. Alongside other films with a claustrophobic air, he characterised it as “Cube with better actors. Reservoir Dogs without the hipness. Lifeboat with a modern spin on war-time paranoia.”


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